On Wednesday, the U.S. House displayed the final tally for a vote on the George Floyd police reform bill, and only one Republican voted in favor of it. And according to The Washington Post, he did by mistake.
The George Floyd Justice in Policing Act would ban chokeholds and change other police policies. Texas Rep. Lance Gooden, a conservative who has expressed enthusiastic support for Donald Trump, was the one vote on the Republican side. But despite what his vote showed, Gooden wasn’t actually in favor of the bill. After the vote, he admitted that he voted in favor of the act completely by accident.
“I accidentally pressed the wrong voting button and realized it too late,” said Gooden. “I have changed the official record to reflect my opposition to the partisan George Floyd Policing Act.” Despite his mistake, the bill still passed 220 to 112, with only two Democrats voting against it. This isn’t the first time such a thing has happened in the U.S. House, In 2012, Democratic North Carolina rep. Becky Carney mistakenly voted against her intentions. Her accidental vote was also the deciding vote, and as a result, fracking was legalized in North Carolina.
As recently as last year, one conservative Maine state senator helped the Democrats keep sports betting legalized in the state even though she intended to vote differently. House rules dictate that votes cannot be changed if it would directly impact the outcome, which is why Carney wasn’t able to change her vote but Gooden was.
The George Floyd Justice in Policing Act would not only ban chokeholds, but put an end to “qualified immunity” for law enforcement in order to increase accountability. A prior version of the bill was passed in the House last year, but at the time. the Republican-controlled Senate rejected it. With a majority-controlled Senate for the Democrats, at least ten Republican senators will need to vote in favor of the act for it to pass.