Sen. Tina Smith: ‘Where are we going to take this movement for social justice?’

Minnesota Sen. Tina Smith reacts to the guilty verdict in the Derek Chauvin trial, and what comes next in getting progress on policing reform in Congress.
5:21 | 04/21/21

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Transcript for Sen. Tina Smith: ‘Where are we going to take this movement for social justice?’
Tina Smith of Minnesota. Senator thank you so much for joining us first just tell me your personal reaction issue heard the verdict read this afternoon. Thank you Lindsey. You know I think hey my reaction was so similar people all across Minnesota. And towns all across this country I used to work in City Hall so why was found frequently in its slot right where almost folks gather reading sorry T you're dead and her ex. And there's a certain palpable sense you know I had I want trust that this system is lines to deliver. Justice. I'm so fearful that it won't so course I was accuse. Sigh yeah. Next calendar and then released we'll end and we heard his dad's. Former police officer Derek Shelton was going to be. And is convicted on all three charges. But didn't immediately start to think about how this is as vice president Harris says this is a measure of justice. But it is about a 100000001. Case it is not addressing the systemic problems that we happen policing and public safety and criminal justice and the systemic racism that I was heartened to hear it. Both the battle. Vice president's parents and the president signs the about it just a moment ago. And of course it's been nearly a year since George. Floyd's dad what this is guilty verdict mean for pulled the state of Minnesota and and for the country. Well I think Canadians into this is why we face we have accountability but the question is what are we going to change this. This movement for social justice that was unleashed that was far as tragic murder where community spark. We're clearly this will lead us finally took place in his car near where we are truly not only CE eighty. The systemic. Racism but we're prepared to take action to address us. And I know that that is a question I'm on the minds of so many minnesotans say it's a question on my mind that we. The power to change the system to change the laws that make it possible. For. George Fuller an embryonic Taylor. And Donte' and write to be murdered. In the basement by homeless and this is the challenge that we have to confront and I. Originally was an original cosponsor. Be. George Floyd justice and policing appetite. Introduced legislation to help spur innovation and we imagine what public safety to look like it but we'll follow these steps that we need to take. In order to change the systems that and resulting in too many. Black and brown people in too many black men and sixty you're losing their lives. And like to piggyback off that decision just mention new sponsor of the Georgia boy justices losing acting congress to try to address police reform. Do you think this verdict today can spur any momentum on how to. Well you know who I am an optimist I sometimes it is you can't really certain. Typically not say senator not a not believe that us over. That's where are coming from I was heartened today excuse. Seated statements. Senator Sims who I notice here is deeply about this issue in the books also has personally experienced. CE. Good profiling and the racism that happens to October and and the work that I believe. Me we put aside our partisan difference and we really address systemic problems have to be optimistic about ash didn't George flood justice and police and asked. Will address the challenges that we had holding police officers accountable. When there are cases of excessive force and also sex matters. Better standard for what excessive force should be bands that presidential polls at least. It stops kind of militarization. Of our police departments wish. I am weak it I think contributes to summit this over policing and under protecting people it is our face. So is the right thing agency isn't right step in the right direction it will solve problems as vice president set a but it will criticize and correct path and I believe we need to redouble our efforts. Such a move that piece of legislation through. And to that and what do you think needs to happen next in order to get bipartisan movement in the senate so that the reform effort doesn't get stalled again. Well I think that there are conversations happening right now and saying ion oops. I'm I encourage you know there's some good person she needs I also know that in my community I live only a few miles. 38 in Chicago where George Floyd was murdered and where they're just how he can see on your screen. It's who. I don't wanna say celebrating this verdict but I'll just breathing a sigh of release. From this verdict you know they want to see action when his action now so we have that we Whitman former. Senator Tina Smith our thanks to we really appreciate your time. Thank you here at last thank you.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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