Senate Approves Final DoD Bill with Hate Crimes Attached
July 24, 2009
Late last night the U.S. Senate passed the Defense Department authorization bill on which the Matthew Shepard Hate Crimes Prevention Act is attached as an amendment. The bill now goes to a Conference Committee to work out differences between the House and Senate versions of the legislation. As HRC Senior Policy Advocate David Stacy wrote earlier this week:
During the month of August, while the Congress is in recess, House and Senate staff will work out differences between the House and Senate bills. Most of these decisions are unrelated to hate crimes and can be worked out at the staff level. Key decisions will be made by Senators and Representatives when they return in September. Most important among these will be the final decision about whether to keep the Matthew Shepard Act. Beyond that threshold question, which we fully expect will be an emphatic “YES,” decisions will have to be made about the amendments passed by the Senate this week.
We'll of course continue to provide updates on the process as it moves forward but we continue to get closer and closer to the moment when President Obama will sign a strong hate crimes bill into LAW.