Top officials of the Georgia GOP are poised to consider a resolution Thursday that denounces racism, opposes excessive use of force by police and expresses support for peaceful protests.
The resolution is a late addition to the party’s state committee meeting as Republicans try to respond to nationwide rallies demanding racial equality. Party officials are also expected to vote on a party platform that aligns with President Donald Trump’s agenda.
Sponsored by Georgia GOP chair David Shafer and several veteran party officials, the resolution also opposes efforts to “defund” police agencies and expresses support for law enforcement officers “in the rightful and prudent exercise of their authority.”
And it praises Trump and U.S. Sen. Tim Scott for efforts to overhaul police procedures “with the aim of safe policing in every American community.” Trump signed an executive order to encourage police departments to change their behavior, though critics said it didn’t go far enough.
Georgia Republicans have scrambled to come to grips with the protests against police brutality spurred by the death of George Floyd. The state’s GOP leaders have vowed to adopt a hate-crimes law, while Democrats and protesters have called for more systemic changes.
The meeting is set days after the Georgia GOP’s executive committee voted to reprimand Brant Frost V, the party’s second vice-chair, for saying that demonstrators who kneel to protest racial injustice are turning the U.S. into the “land of the weak and the home of the slave.”
The party’s meeting comes as the GOP faces fresh challenges from energized Democrats eager to flip Georgia’s two U.S. Senate seats and hand Joe Biden the state’s 16 electoral votes. Democrats outvoted Republicans in last week’s primary, and avoided divisive runoffs in several top races.
Here's the full text:
RESOLVED, that the Georgia Republican Party, the party of Abraham Lincoln founded on the American promise that "all men are created equal," in reaffirmation of its historic commitment to principles of equality, does hereby:
1. Denounce racism and senseless violence in all its forms;
2. Oppose the excessive use of force in the enforcement of law;
3. Support peaceable assembly as guaranteed by the First Amendment;
4. Call for civility, empathy, and understanding as we listen to one another;
5. Express its continued support for the men and women in law enforcement in the rightful and prudent exercise of their authority; and
6. Reject "defunding" our first responders, as this will put more lives in danger.
FURTHER RESOLVED, that we do hereby commend and encourage the continued leadership of President Donald Trump and Senator Tim Scott in the reform of police procedures with the aim of safe policing in every American community.
David Belle Isle
BJ Van Gundy
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