Rep. Cline Statement on the Events Following the Killing of George Floyd

June 2, 2020
Press Release

WASHINGTON – Today, Congressman Ben Cline (VA-06) released the following statement regarding the events that have occurred following the brutal killing of George Floyd.

“Americans stand united in condemning the brutal killing of George Floyd. We share the grief and anger of Mr. Floyd's family, who remain in our prayers during this difficult time,” Cline said. “Mr. Floyd’s killing was an outrageous act of violence committed by a member of law enforcement, and with the recent arrest and charging of the now-former officer involved, I look forward to justice being served and being served quickly.” 

“Over the last week, thousands of Americans have gathered peacefully in cities across the country to express their outrage and anger over Mr. Floyd's death. Unfortunately, these protests have been interrupted and in some cases hijacked by those intent on fomenting chaos and anarchy in our country. Burning churches, looting small, community and minority-owned businesses, and attacking fellow citizens is never the answer. While the First Amendment of the Constitution guarantees every American’s right to peaceably assemble, those who partake in violence in the pursuit of their cause poison their message.”

“I want to express my respect and appreciation to those who protested peacefully regarding Mr. Floyd's killing and who exercised their First Amendment rights, including those who participated in events in Roanoke, Lynchburg, Staunton and Harrisonburg. We all condemn the killing of George Floyd. But we must also stand together and reject those who would use these peaceful protests to pursue their radical agendas of violence and destruction. Yesterday, President Trump correctly identified the Rule of Law as the foundation of our very way of life. Failure to maintain law and order will only result in the further spreading of grief and loss in communities across our Nation.”

“As the Floyd family said in a recent statement, ‘Looting and violence distract from the strength of our collective voice.’ Let us together turn our collective voice into positive action, and through outreach, dialogue and understanding, we can work to achieve justice and greater unity as a Nation in the days ahead."

Congressman Ben Cline represents the Sixth Congressional District of Virginia. He previously was an attorney in private practice and served both as an assistant prosecutor and Member of the Virginia House of Delegates. Cline and his wife, Elizabeth, live in Botetourt County with their two children.