The Florida Senate on Thursday passed, largely along party lines, a controversial anti-riot bill that was pushed by GOP Gov. Ron DeSantis in the wake of Black Lives Matter protests last summer.
The bill would increase criminal penalties for assaulting law enforcement officials while engaging in a “riot” and defacing monuments and other public property during riots. It would also penalize local governments that interfere with law enforcement efforts to contain riots and set up a citizen’s appeal process when cities and counties try to reduce police budgets in response to riots.
The final vote in the Senate was 23-17, with one Republican voting with Democrats in opposition. The bill passed the GOP-controlled House in la