Senator Cornyn

Crime & Law Enforcement

Fighting dangerous criminals and providing justice to victims are some of our most important commitments. I will always stand strong for our law enforcement officers, making sure they have the resources needed to keep Texas safe and secure.

Senator Cornyn knows firsthand the dedication of the men and women who protect our fellow Texans. While serving as Attorney General of Texas, the state’s chief law enforcement officer, Senator Cornyn created and backed numerous initiatives to strengthen law enforcement, including the groundbreaking Texas Exile program, which increases penalties for criminal gun use by convicted felons, and the Texas Internet Bureau, which targets child predators and human traffickers.

Senator Cornyn has taken his Texas experience to the United States Senate, advocating for issues that bolster law enforcement through his work on the Judiciary Committee. He believes that local, state, and federal authorities must work together as partners to enforce the law, and that they must be given the legal tools and funding resources necessary to do their jobs well. He believes policymakers in Washington, D.C. can learn many commonsense lessons from the successes of the Texas criminal justice system.

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  • Authored the Back the Blue Act to increase penalties for criminals who target law enforcement officers and provide new tools for officers to protect themselves.
  • Authored the Project Safe Childhood Act, which would make improvements to the investigation and prosecution of online child exploitation.
  • Introduced legislation to reauthorize the Project Safe Neighborhoods Grant Program, which is a nationwide law enforcement program that uses evidence-based and data-driven approaches to reduce violent crime and recently passed the Senate.  
  • Cosponsored legislation to make permanent and expand the Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Victim Assistance Program that helps provide support to individuals impacted by human trafficking.
  • Cosponsored the Stopping Harmful Image Exploitation and Limiting Distribution (SHIELD) Act, which would provide federal law enforcement with the tools they need to crack down on serious privacy violations.
  • Authored the Jenna Quinn Law, named after a Texan and survivor of child abuse which is based on successful reforms in Texas to help adults who work with children identify, report, and prevent child abuse.
  • Introduced the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act, now law, which is a targeted bill to address the specific problems that have led to recent mass shootings, including a need for additional mental health and school safety resources. Learn more HERE.
  • Introduced the Fix NICS Act, now law, to help ensure federal and state authorities comply with existing law and accurately report relevant criminal history records to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS). Learn more HERE.
  • Authored the Respect for Child Survivors Act, now law, which improves the treatment of Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) child victim witnesses by requiring trauma-informed experts to be a part of any interview of a victim who reports child abuse or trafficking to the FBI. This bill was inspired by the striking testimony given by retired gymnast and survivor McKayla Maroney during a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing examining the Inspector General’s Report on the FBI’s handling of the Larry Nassar investigation.
  • Authored the Homicide Victims’ Families’ Rights Act, now law, which requires federal agencies to revisit cold case murder files and apply new technologies in search of potential breakthroughs. This bill was inspired by a quadruple homicide case in Austin, Texas over 30 years ago that claimed the lives of four teenage girls and still remains unsolved.
  • Introduced the Justice and Mental Health Collaboration Reauthorization Act, now law, which will reauthorize critical grants for mental health courts, crisis intervention teams, and other programs that have helped law enforcement assist individuals experiencing mental illness for nearly two decades.
  • Introduced a bill to reauthorize the Project Safe Neighborhoods Grant Program, a nationwide partnership between federal, state, and local law enforcement and prosecutors that uses evidence-based and data-driven approaches to reduce violent crime.
  • Authored the Supreme Court Police Parity Act, now law, which allows the U.S. Supreme Court to provide the families of Supreme Court Justices with around-the-clock security protection.
  • Authored the Law Enforcement De-escalation Training Act, now law, which will equip law enforcement officers with the tools to effectively and safely respond to people in crisis by creating a funding stream dedicated to training local and state law enforcement officers, as well as mental health professionals who work with them in de-escalation tactics, alternatives to use of force, and how to safely respond to mental, behavioral, and suicidal crises.
  • Introduced a bill to reauthorize the Abolish Human Trafficking Act, now law, which will strengthen key programs supporting survivors of human trafficking and provide resources to law enforcement officials. The original legislation was introduced by Senator Cornyn and became law in 2018.

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