DES MOINES, Iowa — The Republican leaders of the Iowa House and Senate both support a plan introduced by Democrats on Thursday to address problems with policing in Iowa.
Democrats introduced a three-part plan to immediately address concerns of minority leaders and the hundreds of protesters in the streets. They want to ban all police chokeholds, make it illegal to hire an officer who has been fired for misconduct and allow an Attorney General investigation into police misconduct.
“I think it would be a very good step forward if we could craft a bill that incorporates these ideas and maybe others. We want to make sure we are listening. These are good ideas that they are bringing forward, and we want to see if we can get it done,” Iowa Senate Majority Leader Jack Whitver said on Iowa Press.
Iowa Speaker of the House Pat Grassley also supports the proposals.
“I think we can take some positive action on that. When I came back on Wednesday, right away I sat down with Representative [Ako] Abdul-Samad and Minority Leader [Todd] Prichard and we had a conversation. I said, with the timeline that we’re working with in the Legislature, what are some things that we can do to have impact immediately on this situation?” said Grassley.
Grassley said there will be broader conversations with Democrats moving forward to address police reform.
Gov. Kim Reynolds said Thursday morning that she hadn’t reviewed the Democrats’ plan and couldn’t comment on it yet. She would only say that lawmakers have the right to introduce the bill and let it play out through the legislative process.
Reynolds said the best approach right now is for all sides to continue listening to one another and making small changes toward a bigger goal.
“We need to listen, we need to understand and we need to demonstrate that we are making progress along the way,” the governor said.