Hate Crimes Bill Passed by Senate

Timothy Kincaid

September 27th, 2007

Today 50 Democrats, 9 Republicans, and an Independant voted to add the Matthew Shepard Hate Crimes Bill to the bill that funds the war in Iraq.

39 Republicans voted against the measure. Technically the vote was for cloture – to end debate. The vote to add hate crimes to the defense bill was passed by voice vote unopposed. This allows Senators to have voted both for and against the bill.

A similar situation happened in 2004 but Republican leadership removed hate crimes in negotiations between the Senate and the House. That is unlikely to happen this time around.

President Bush will be in the uneviable position of either signing the bill and infuriating his social conservative supporters (about the only supporters he has left) or vetoing the bill and trying to explain to America that preventing hate crimes legislation is more important than paying our soldiers overseas.

Ben in oakland

September 27th, 2007

My guess is he will veto it. i don’t think he gives much of a damn about our soldiers.

Ben in oakland

September 27th, 2007

Actually, upon further reflection, I will rephrase that. Bush will never see it. It will be eliminated from the conference version. That way, the dems can say they voted for it, the repubs can say they voted against it, and bush can sign the final defense authroization.

Bill Perdue

September 27th, 2007

If the Matthew Sheppard Act makes it past the Congress and the White House it’ll come just in time. Despite its weaknesses, the penalties aren’t harsh enough and they don’t routinely include the politicians and religious fanatics who incite violence, it’s a step forward.

The urgency is obvious because the last few weeks have seen a national upturn in violence against gays and lesbians identical to those that played out in 2000 and 2004. The Republicans and the christian bigots are already hatemongering and we still have a year to go. The Democrats response, slicker and quieter but no less damaging, denies our right to marriage and full equality.

The combination of the three makes us, in the eyes of thugs and bigots, second class citizens. Wherever groups are made unequal by force of law, they’re in jeopardy and the upsurge in beatings and even murders means we’re in for rough times again.


September 27th, 2007

Umm… I’m pretty sure there are only 49 Democrats in the Senate. So, you mean 49 Dems and two Independents.

Timothy Kincaid

September 27th, 2007


I was counting Lieberman as a Democrat instead of an Independent Democrat. But technically the count is:

49 Democrats (D)
9 Republicans (R)
1 Independent (I)
1 Independent Democrat (ID)

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