The Death in Custody Reporting Act Passed House and Senate and About to Become Law. Last night as the Senate adjourned, a bill authored by Crime Subcommittee ranking member Bobby Scott passed the Senate. H.R. 1447, The Death in Custody Reporting Act, had already passed the House the year before and is now headed to the White House to be signed into law.
With the House scheduled to adjourn for the year today, Rep. Scott’s bill got a bi-partisan assist in the 11th hour by Senator Rand Paul (R-KY). Sen. Paul has been on the same page when it comes to criminal justice reform as many Black Caucus members. He is said to have been crucial in getting a few Republican colleagues to allow the Death in Custody Bill to pass.
Two holds were on the bill only 72 hours ago. Any Senator can put a “hold” on any legislation even if 99 other Senators are OK with it passing. When asked about his work behind the scenes on the bill, Sen. Paul gave credit to the bill’s author, Rep. Scott.
“Congressman Scott was the moving force behind it. There was a little bit of opposition over here and I tried to get rid of that opposition,” Sen. Paul said before votes this morning.
“Congressman Scott deserves most of the credit and I did a little bit of help over here. I think that we need to investigate things. There’s a lot of unhappiness in the country and we need to figure out where the problems are and try to fix them,” Sen. Paul added.
Paul has partnered with another Black Caucus member, Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ) on another criminal justice reform bill, the REDEEM Act.
Even though many Democrats have been uneasy about having a Republican firebrand involved in what has traditionally been a blue issue — Sen. Paul has often been ahead of many so-called “progressives” in the Democratic party on criminal justice reform.