WASHINGTON, D.C. — In the wake of George Floyd’s killing, there are now two competing police reform bills being debated in Congress.

But like many things in Washington, politics is slowing the policy making process.

What You Need To Know

  • House Democrats and Senate Republicans release competing police reform bills

  • White House says it supports Republican plan

  • Democrats say GOP plan doesn’t go far enough

“For far too long, pleas for justice and reform have fallen on deaf ears in Congress,” Representative Jerry Nadler (D-New York) said Wednesday. “But that changes today.”

On Wednesday, the House Judiciary Committee began marking up what’s now called the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act, which House Democrats recently introduced.

Ohio Congressman Jim Jordan (R, 4th Congressional District) is the top Republican on the committee.

“Not one single Republican was consulted with the bill that we’re marking up today. Not one,” Jordan said during the hearing.

House Republicans are aligning themselves with President Trump, who on Tuesday signed an executive order that encourages police departments with incentives to embrace reform, but doesn’t require much change.

House Democrats’ legislation would go a lot further: ban chokeholds and no-knock warrants; end qualified immunity; and stop new federal funding for policing.

But on the other side of the Capitol, Senate Republicans released their own reform bill on Wednesday called the Justice Act.

It would disincentivize chokeholds and no-knock warrants, but not ban them. And the bill wouldn’t address qualified immunity, but would continue federal funding for policing.

Senator Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) has endorsed the House Democrats’ bill and told me on Tuesday that talk of defunding police departments cannot overshadow the real reform he and his colleagues want.

“Of course we will continue to have important, major player police departments in all of our communities,” Brown said in a video conference interview. “We need them. I just want police officers not to have to do work that is outside of their province, if you will, that can be done by others who are trained to do those kinds of things, like mental health treatment.”

President Trump’s press secretary said Wednesday the administration is supportive of the bill introduced by Senate Republicans, but Democrats are already saying it doesn’t go far enough.

So even if the House and Senate pass their own versions, everyone will still have to go back to the drawing board and figure out a deal Congress and the president can agree on.