Top Democrats decried the decision by Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron (R) to charge only one officer involved in Breonna Taylor’s shooting, and not for her death, calling it another example of the systemic injustice faced by Black Americans.

“Breonna Taylor. Breonna Taylor. Breonna Taylor,” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) interrupted as a previously planned segment on MSNBC wrapped up Wednesday afternoon. “Say her name.”

Pelosi and other congressional leaders also used the moment to call for police reform and an overhaul of the criminal justice system.

“This is wrong. Breonna Taylor’s life mattered. She deserves justice. Her family deserves justice. Unjust laws produce unjust outcomes. This must end,” Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.).

The scene in Louisville after a grand jury indicts one of the officers involved in the Breonna Taylor shooting

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Sept. 23, 2020 | People in Louisville react after a grand jury decision in the case against police officers involved in the death of Breonna Taylor, who was shot by police in her apartment. (Carlos Barria/Reuters)

“The Senate must pass the Justice in Policing Act,” he added.

Republicans, meanwhile, offered few public comments. At a Wednesday evening news conference, President Trump praised Cameron as “really brilliant” and “a star.”

Trump then quoted something Cameron said at his news conference this afternoon, saying, “Justice is not often easy. It does not fit the mold of public opinion and it does not conform to shifting standards and answers only to the facts and to the law. If we simply act on emotion or outrage, there is no justice. Mob justice is not justice.”

Former vice president Joe Biden walked a different line than Trump and some of his fellow Democrats, urging reform while pleading for nonviolence in response to the decision.

Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron (R) spoke about the grand jury's investigation into the death of Breonna Taylor. (Reuters)

“We know what is necessary,” he said late Wednesday, when his plane touched down in Delaware after a day of campaigning in Charlotte. “We need to start by addressing the use of excessive force, banning choke holds, and overhauling no-knock warrants. I know people are frustrated and they have a right to peacefully protest, but violence is never acceptable.”

Democratic vice-presidential nominee Kamala D. Harris, at the Capitol for an intelligence briefing Wednesday, was asked about the decision just minutes after it was announced.

“I haven’t read it fully yet, but there’s no question that Breonna Taylor and her family deserve justice yesterday, today and tomorrow,” said Harris, who said she would review the decision further.

Harris, a senator from California and former attorney general of that state, has consistently called for an investigation into Taylor’s death. In May, Harris and Rep. Lucy McBath (D-Ga.) penned a letter to Assistant Attorney General Eric S. Dreiband demanding that the Justice Department pursue an independent investigation into the killing and whether the Louisville police department has engaged in a pattern or practice of constitutional violations.

In August, Harris tweeted: “We must keep saying her name and demanding justice because the police who killed her still have not been charged.”

Harris often mentions Taylor’s name during campaign events, particularly when asked about policing reform and the importance of abolishing chokeholds and no-knock warrants.

Her willingness to position herself as a visible advocate for overhauling the criminal justice system, to join Black Lives Matter protests in Washington over the summer and to prioritize legislation addressing issues that disproportionately affect Black Americans helped her rebuild bridges with several high-profile activists who had expressed skepticism of the former prosecutor during her campaign.

Since being named to the ticket, Harris has continued prioritizing outreach to Black voters and organizing groups, and she has not shied away from speaking about the need to “rethink policing.” She has been critical of the notion that police are judged by what “a reasonable” officer would do.

“As we all know,” Harris said at a campaign event Tuesday in Detroit. “You can reason away almost anything.”

As Biden occasionally drew criticism for spending too much time condemning looting and violence and not enough supporting the protests over the last few months, Black leaders say they have been happier with Harris’s condemnations of police violence. Before Wednesday, Biden had been less forceful in his language about Taylor’s case than his running mate.

“I think we should let the judicial system work its way,” he said when asked about police shootings of Taylor and Jacob Blake in an interview this month with a Wisconsin television station, before adding: “I do think there’s a minimum, need to be charged, the officers.”

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) tweeted: “Breonna Taylor’s life mattered. This result is a disgrace and an abdication of justice. Our criminal justice system is racist. The time for fundamental change is now.”

Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D), up for reelection in Michigan, tweeted that the ruling demonstrated that it has “never been clearer this country considers property more valuable than human life.” Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D-Mass.) was spotted wearing a shirt that said “Arrest the cops who killed Breonna Taylor” outside the Capitol on Wednesday.

The decision “is just weighing really heavy on my heart,” Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) told reporters Wednesday. “because we know that her death is not just the result of one person but the system, structure and department that failed their entire community.”

The ruling also rippled into down-ballot races, in which candidates have long since staked out their positions on police violence and the Black Lives Matter movement.

Earlier this year, Republican Sen. Kelly Loeffler, running in a special election in Georgia, asked the Women’s National Basketball Association to cancel plans to allow players to wear “Black Lives Matter” and “Say Her Name” on their warm-up jerseys in honor of Taylor.

Loeffler, co-owner of the Atlanta Dream, argued in a letter to the league’s commissioner that Black Lives Matter “is not a political movement that the league should be embracing, and I emphatically oppose it.”

Loeffler has not spoken publicly about the Taylor decision.

But her Democratic opponent, the Rev. Raphael Warnock, made his position clear Wednesday.

“Not charging all the cops responsible for Breonna Taylor’s death is a gross negligence of justice. It devalues the life of Breonna Taylor. Black lives matter. We will not have #JusticeForBreonnaTaylor until all the cops involved are held accountable,” he tweeted.

A Monmouth Poll released Wednesday morning showed Loeffler and Warnock in a tight race.

Former Colorado governor John Hickenlooper (D), in a close race for Senate with incumbent Republican Cory Gardner, called the decision “an insult to her life” in a tweet Wednesday afternoon.

“It’s beyond time we reform a broken justice system, ban no-knock warrants, and hold officers accountable,” Hickenlooper wrote. Gardner did not offer a public statement.