One Day After Climate Protests in DC, GOP Rep Pens Bill to Charge Protesters for Police Overtime

Michael A. McCoy/Reuters

After climate change activists flooded streets in the nation’s capital, a Republican lawmaker is looking to make sure those who were arrested pay for the overtime of law enforcement officials.

Rep. Jim Banks (R-Ind.) announced on Monday that he would be introducing legislation in response to Monday’s “Shut Down DC” protest, to urge members of Congress to take action to combat climate change.

The bill would force arrested protestors to “pay for police overtime and other fees related to the action.”

“Under my bill, a person will be responsible for public safety response costs incurred by the District of Columbia’s response to a demonstration if, in connection with the demonstration, the person is convicted of a felony or misdemeanor offense,” Banks tweeted.

He added, “Hoosier taxpayers shouldn’t be on the hook for illegal protests – it is a violation of their 1st Amendment rights.”

The Republican lawmaker made it clear that the legislation wouldn’t prevent any further demonstrations or protests in Washington, D.C., but it’d “only apply to illegal protesters who are arrested.”

Climate activists flocked to the streets of D.C. on Monday, in the days after worldwide protests for climate action, led by 16-year-old Swedish activist Greta Thunberg.

The activists blocked major traffic streets in the U.S. capital, as they stationed a sailboat in the middle of an intersection and held a dance party in a street. The protest backfired as several people took to social media to mock the “genius strategy,” as IJR reported.

Activist Thunberg attended the United Nations Climate Action Summit on Monday, where she rebuked world leaders for not taking up measures to address climate change, as IJR reported.

“This is all wrong. I shouldn’t be up here. I should be back in school on the other side of the ocean yet you all come to us young people for hope,” Thunberg said, adding, “How dare you.”

What do you think?

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General Confusion
Member

“The bill is clearly designed to get the little known Rep. some media attention. The chances of passing both houses of congress are the same as Medicare for All.” Phyllis

A similar bill was passed in a couple of states (I think one was South Dakota/pipeline) and they are crafted to directly silence protesters.

Since this is a House bill, you are correct. It will go nowhere.

Laura Sealey
Member

Good for him and I hope it goes through. Very ridiculous that they blocked traffic which no doubt caused for auto and bus emissions to be increased in the DC area as well as the protesters keeping hospital and first responders from being able to be effective and timely in doing their jobs. Lunacy on display for a Soro’s puppet, poor child, she should also get a bill along with her parents.

General Confusion
Member

This bill is clearly designed to silence opposition.

Rep. Jim Banks (R-Ind.) is confused about what America stands for. Vote this fascist out!

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