Unfinished Lives

Remembering LGBT Hate Crime Victims

Obama Administration Full Court Press Removes F-22 Funding, Clears Way for Passage of Matthew Shepard Act Amendment

Obama GayWashington, DC – In a lobbying effort that Senator John McCain, President Obama’s former rival for the White House, credited for the number of votes necessary to win, the Obama Administration influenced the Senate to cut funding for the controversial F-22 Raptor fighter jet program.  The DOD appropriations bill now is set for passage, inclusive of the Matthew Shepard Hate Crimes Prevention Act Amendment, extending federal anti-bias protection to LGBT people for the first time in American law.  The Associated Press reports that Rahm Emanuel, President Obama’s Chief of Staff, Vice President Joe Biden, and Defense Secretary Robert Gates joined the President in lobbying the Senate, contending that the F-22 twin engine fighter is obsolete, and enough of them now exist to tide the country over until production of the F-35 fighter jet, now in the testing stage.  In a move opposed by the Human Rights Campaign and other LGBT advocacy groups, however, three “unwelcome” death penalty amendments were attached to the Matthew Shepard Act yesterday by voice vote, angering gay and lesbian activists by weighting down anti-hate crime legislation with an extension of the death penalty which they say is opposed to the whole nature and intent of the legislation.  The offending amendments were proposed by right-wing Senator Jeff Sessions of Alabama.  The HRC has called for all these amendments to be removed from the final bill by the House and Senate conference committee that will reconcile the legislation passed by both houses of Congress, in the event that the DOD appropriations bill passes the Senate in its present death-penalty-amendment-inclusive form.

July 21, 2009 - Posted by | Hate Crimes, Matthew Shepard Act, military, Politics, Social Justice Advocacy, U.S. Senate, Washington, D.C. | , , , , , ,

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.

%d bloggers like this: