Gov. Tim Walz says George Floyd video made him 'physically ill'

State leaders are promising a fast and transparent investigation.
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Governor Tim Walz

Gov. Tim Walz says that the video showing the arrest of George Floyd made him "physically ill," and said they will seek justice for his death.

The governor was speaking at a press conference on Wednesday afternoon, in which he addressed the death of the 46-year-old from St. Louis Park following an incident with police in south Minneapolis on Monday evening.

"George Floyd didn't deserve to die, but George Floyd does deserve justice," Walz said, noting that "the lack of humanity" in the video showing an officer holding a knee on Floyd's neck made Walz "physically ill."

After the violent scenes in Minneapolis on Tuesday evening, Walz urged everyone to protest peacefully, and thanked those who did protest for wearing masks and keeping social distancing in mind during the COVID-19 pandemic.

That said, he said he does share the guttural reaction to the video as many others, saying: "Watching any of the video of what happened to George Floyd and then watching citizens come out last night, I, too, share that urge of just a primal scream of when you watch humanity erased in front of you. It is almost inexplicable how you respond."

"To those in pain, to those angry, to those afraid, I not only see you, I hear you and I stand with you."

Speaking virtually during the conference was Lt. Gov. Peggy Flanagan, who said we can't return "to normal" at the end of the COVID-19 pandemic.

"Someday when its safe we have option of going back to normal but we must not let that happen," she said. "Normal means that black and brown bodies are not safe. Normal was not working for us. We can't get back to normal, we must get back to better."

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It was revealed at the press conference that an autopsy on Floyd's body has not yet been completed, which is why not decision has been made yet on charging any of the officers involved, given that a cause of death is a major piece of evidence when determining prosecutions.

Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison said emotion must be kept out of the state criminal and federal civil rights investigations now on going, saying: "This investigation must proceed with a degree with objectivity. We are not going to prejudge the facts when the video is so clear before out eyes."

Minnesota Department of Public Safety Commissioner John Harrington echoed those sentiments, saying the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension will be "factual, objective, and lawful, and will produce an honest report."

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