Posts tagged ‘Matthew Shepard Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act (S. 1105)’

March 23, 2011

Hate Crimes bill S.1105 or H.R. 1592

Dear Mr. Shaw:

Thank you for contacting me regarding hate crimes legislation. I appreciate hearing from you and would like to respond to your concerns.

On April 12, 2007, Senator Edward Kennedy (D-MA) introduced the Matthew Shepard Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act (S. 1105). This legislation would broaden federal jurisdiction of hate crimes by adding gender, disability, and sexual orientation to the categories protected by civil rights laws and would create a separate federal criminal charge for committing a hate crime. S. 1105 has been referred to the Senate Committee on the Judiciary, where it awaits further consideration.

A similar measure (H.R. 1592) was introduced in the House of Representatives by Representative John Conyers (D-MI) on March 20, 2007. H.R. 1592 was passed by the House on May 3, 2007, by a vote of 237 to 180. This measure now awaits consideration by the Senate Committee on the Judiciary.

While there is an urgent need to reduce the incidence of these crimes in our nation, it is important that federal legislation not invade an area constitutionally reserved to State and local law enforcement officials. Should S. 1105 or H.R. 1592 come before the full Senate, rest assured that I will keep your thoughts in mind.

Again, thank you for sharing your views with me. If you have any additional questions or comments, please do not hesitate to contact me. In addition, for more information about issues and activities important to Florida, please sign up for my weekly newsletter at http://martinez.senate.gov.

Sincerely,

Mel Martinez
United States Senator