House moves forward on police legislation amid internal Democratic dispute

House Democrats, who have spent months trying to cobble together a package of police defunding bills to help combat attacks on the campaign trail, spent Thursday morning battling to secure votes for the to adopt, according to a source familiar with the matter.

Several progressive Democrats threatened to vote against it, and the House was suspended as leaders tried to address the issue. According to a person with knowledge of the matter.

Several other progressive Democrats plan to vote no, so the vote will be close but it should pass.

The House cleared a procedural hurdle on Thursday afternoon to open debate on the package of bills. The vote was extremely close, however, a sign of how rigorous vote counting for Democrats on the legislation is. Pressley voted present in the procedural vote to begin debate on the bills.

It was a tense few moments in the House as Democrats tried to figure out how to get the votes needed to pass the police bills in the procedural vote.

Progressive Representative Ilhan Omar, who negotiated the bills, was huddled with House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, biting his nails near the dais.

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy tried to delay the vote and said there was one member who was three minutes away who could vote. When the bills passed, Democrats in attendance cheered.

How the voting went

Supporters of the package announced on Wednesday that they would reach an agreement to pass the package this week after months of negotiations. Hoyer told reporters a vote would be scheduled for Thursday, and Rep. Joyce Beatty, chair of the Congressional Black Caucus, said the move comes after reaching a compromise on language guaranteeing police accountability and scrapping another draft bill. most controversial law of the discussions.

Congressional Progressive Caucus Chair Pramila Jayapal of Washington state and Democratic Rep. Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, who serves as caucus whip, released a statement Wednesday applauding the deal.

The bill is mostly a messaging bill coming in the midterms, as moderate members of the House Democrats have sought to shield themselves from the political attacks they are on the police.

CNN reported earlier this week how dozens of the party’s most vulnerable members sought to defuse those attacks through a flurry of pro-police campaign ads and local events with law enforcement.

This story and headline were updated with additional developments on Thursday.

CNN’s Daniella Diaz and Kristin Wilson contributed to this report.


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