Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin, a Republican, signed his first veto Tuesday on a bill that would have created a politically appointed independent policing auditor hired directly by the Arlington County Board of Supervisors.

H.B. 670, which reached Youngkin’s desk after passing the Virginia House of Delegates by a vote of 65-35 and the state Senate by a vote of 21-19, allowed the politically appointed auditor to take binding disciplinary actions, including termination.

“The best way to ensure that any bad actors within law enforcement are held accountable is to stand up for law enforcement, not tear them down or subject them to politically-motivated inquiries,” Youngkin said in a statement Tuesday morning.

The governor’s office also noted that Youngkin vetoed the legislation because it did not “delineate the qualifications of the politically-appointed independent policing auditor,” running the risk of handing one individual power that could cause “an undue burden for those who protect and serve the community.”

The bill will return to the House of Delegates with Youngkin’s objections.

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