Friday, October 23, 2009

Hate Crimes Legislation Passes Senate

This is good news:

The Senate has voted to pass the The Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention law as part of the Defense Authorization Bill, invoking cloture to produce a majority vote of 68-29. The bill will now go to President Obama's desk where he is expected to sign after vowing to support the extension of existing hate rimes legislation.

The hate crimes law, which was added to the $680 billion defense authorization bill earlier this year, would extend the scope of federal hate crimes laws to include assaults against an individual based on their sexual orientation or perceived gender identity, allowing harsher punishments to be dealt for bias motivated crimes. It passed the House two weeks ago on a vote of 281 to 146.

Most Republican senators voted against the bill, by the way, which will not surpise you.

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