Ben Crump is a lawyer who specializes in civil rights and catastrophic personal injury cases.

Last week, Senate negotiators declared the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act dead, after it became clear there would be no consensus with Republicans unless Democrats agreed to gut key provisions of the bill.

The point of this bill is to drive change and finally hold police officers and agencies accountable, and Senate Democrats were right to refuse to pass meaningless, watered-down legislation. But their work cannot end there.

Sometimes an issue is simply not ripe for action. But after millions of Americans and others throughout the world have taken to the streets to protest the shocking murder of George Floyd, the issue of police reform and accountability is beyond ripe. And like most things that have festered too long, the Senate’s inaction and blame gaming simply stink.

These days in Washington, it’s nearly impossible to reach bipartisan agreement on anything, let alone something as significant as police reform. Yet Senate Democrats would do well to remember — and avoid letting down — a constituency with a track record of doing the impossible: Black voters.

It was Black voters who turned out in record numbers in Georgia this year to lift Jon Ossoff and Raphael G. Warnock to victory, giving Democrats control of the Senate. In the last presidential election, 87 percent of Black voters cast their ballots for Joe Biden, helping to seal his victory and prompting him to declare, “You’ve always had my back, and I’ll have yours.”

Last week, Black voters were among the family members of victim after victim of police violence who recorded passionate messages urging Senate action. They included Tamika Palmer, whose daughter Breonna Taylor became a household name after police in Louisville used a no-knock warrant to break into her apartment and gun her down. The George Floyd act seeks to demilitarize policing by limiting military-grade equipment and banning no-knock warrants in federal drug cases.

Tashyra Prude, the daughter of Daniel Prude, who died in police custody in Rochester, N.Y., with a hood over his head during a mental health emergency, urged passage of the Floyd act as a step toward better protocols for interacting with people with a mental illness.

Senators heard from Teena Acree, niece of Byron Williams, who was chased while riding a bicycle, then subdued and restrained to the point of death by police who had their body cameras turned off. The Floyd act seeks to ensure the use of body and dashboard cameras by tying federal funds to that requirement.

Senators heard from Alissa Findley, sister of Botham Jean, who was killed by an off-duty policewoman while eating ice cream in his own home, after the officer mistook his apartment for her own. The Floyd act would improve and standardize training, to include measures against discriminatory profiling.

Tiffany Crutcher’s twin brother, Terence Crutcher, was shot while walking away from police with his hands in the air. She, too, made a heartfelt plea for the Floyd act, which seeks to make it easier to prosecute officers who commit misconduct by lowering the legal standard for misconduct from “willfulness” to “recklessness.”

And Philonise Floyd, whose brother would be memorialized in the most meaningful way by this bill’s passage, talked about the lifelong pain his family will suffer and urged that the Floyd act be passed in full, not watered down.

The bill contains — and must retain — critical provisions to end chokeholds and carotid holds, and to eliminate qualified immunity, which shields officers from most civil lawsuits. It would drive accountability by finally creating a national police misconduct registry and by allowing state attorneys and the U.S. Justice Department to conduct “pattern and practice” investigations of police departments to root out toxic police cultures and identify where chronically inadequate training and discipline are creating a threat to the people being policed.

Rather than weakening the bill to win elusive Republican approval, it’s time for Senate Democrats to demonstrate their commitment by bringing it to a floor vote and putting every senator on record.

Black voters will not accept the excuse that the filibuster, a parliamentary relic as outdated as Confederate monuments, makes it impossible to pass meaningful police reform. The filibuster, which was also used to block passage of civil rights and anti-lynching legislation, is not enshrined in the Constitution. It’s a Senate rule that Democrats can change — those very Democrats whom Black voters put into power.

Short of that, Democrats should not expect Black voters to pull off the impossible for them again.

As the brokenhearted family members who lost loved ones to police violence stated over and over in their messages to legislators: “We’re better than this, America.” They’re right. And the U.S. Senate should be better than allowing this important work to remain unfinished.