Biden Signs Republican-Backed Legislation To Block Controversial Changes To Washington DC Crime Bill

DC Crime Bill

President Joe Biden finally signed a bill to block controversial changes to the criminal code in Washington DC. The update to the DC crime bill would have dropped the maximum penalty for a number of violent crimes that include armed robbery and carjacking.

The Republicans had slammed the update to the laws and sponsored the bill and said that the Democrats were going soft on violent crime. They used the oversight responsibilities of the chamber to scuttle the legislation. It was only the 4th time since early 1970 that a district law had been revoked by the US Congress.

The bill was sponsored by Rep. Andrew Clyde (R-Ga.). He termed the DC crime bill as a risky overhaul of the criminal code. He said that the president had officially signed his bipartisan resolution that blocks the code and turns it into law. He said that it was a major step towards restoring the rule of law in the capital city of the US.

DC Crime Bill Would Have Lowered Max Sentence For Certain Crimes

The DC crime bill if passed would have brought down the maximum punishment for carjacking to 18 years from 21 years if unarmed. For armed carjacking, the sentence would have been lowered from 40 years to 24 years. For armed robberies, the maximum penalty would have come down by more than half from 45 years to 20 years.

Kevin McCarthy, the House Speaker said that the Republicans would continue to fight to ensure safety for communities. He said that had the Democrats retained the majority in the House, the victory would have been impossible.

The council tried to pull back the bill from being considered by Congress as signs emerged that it might be upended. But they were prevented by the 2019 Home Rule Act as it does not permit any legislation to be withdrawn.