H.R. 1592, the Hate Crimes Prevention Act, has passed by a vote of 237-180:
“Every day we that we come to this floor we pledge allegiance to the flag and at the end of that pledge we say, ‘liberty and justice for all.’ And that is what today is about…Hate crimes have no place in America – no place where we pledge every morning ‘with liberty and justice for all.’ We must act to end hate crimes and save lives.
“Some people ask: Why is this legislation even necessary? To them, I answer: because brutal hate crimes motivated by race, religion, national origin, gender, sexual orientation and identity or disability not only injure individual victims, but also terrorize entire segments of our population and tear at our nation’s social fabric.”
“King went on to say that it is always right, the right time to do that which is right. Now a lot of people yesterday told me that this is the wrong time to bring this legislation. For a moment I agreed, but reflecting on Dr. King’s admonition that the time is always right to do right, I come before this body today to ask us to use the time that we have before us to do right by those people who may not be like us.”