Washington D.C.: A significant group of over 25 GOP senators is advocating for stricter consequences against individuals who intentionally harm law enforcement officers. The new proposed measures under the Back the Blue Act include the death penalty. Additionally, they aim to enhance the self-defense safeguards provided to these dedicated officers.
Texas Republican Senator John Cornyn and over 30 of his GOP colleagues, including Minority leader Mitch McConnell, R- Ky, introduced the Act. The law introduces a new federal crime for killing or attempting to kill a federal law enforcement officer. The Act also covers conspiring to kill. Additionally, it covers federal judges and federally funded peace officers.
In a statement provided by Sen. Cornyn, he said, “Our law enforcement officers put their lives on the line every day to serve families across Texas.” He continued, “Violent criminals who target those who protect our communities should face swift and tough penalties. And the Back the Blue Act sends that clear message.”
Louisiana Republican Sen. John Kennedy was also among the members who support the bill. In a press release statement, Sen. Kennedy said, “Louisiana’s law enforcement heroes risk their lives for our communities every day, and vicious criminals too often target these officers because of their service. Supporting law enforcement means punishing the violent people who mean them harm and defending the freedoms that help these officers keep themselves and others safe.”
More on the Back the Blue Act
The bill has been created to add additional punishment to criminals charged with crimes involving law enforcement.
- If killing, attempting to kill or conspiring to kill, the offender will be considered for the death penalty. They will also face a minimum of 30 years in prison is death results. Otherwise, the offender will face a minimum of 10 years in prison.
- Increases in mandatory minimums if the offender commits an assault and other escalating penalties.
- If any offender crosses states lines for the purpose of avoiding prosecution, they will receive 10 years for that sole offense. This is in addition to other increases penalties as a result of the Back the Blue Act.
According to a press release: “The bill would limit federal habeas relief for criminals who murder law enforcement officers. It would impose time limits and substantive limits on federal courts’ review of challenges to state-court convictions for crimes involving the murder of a public safety officer when the public safety officer was engaged in the performance of official duties or on account of the performance of official duties. These changes are consistent with the fast-track procedures created in 1996, which are applied to federal death penalty cases.”
The Act includes expanded Second Amendment rights. It will allow additional firearm carry rights in certain establishments and federal facilities and other jurisdictions that were otherwise prohibited.
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