American Jewish Congress Opposing Amendment No. 1251
HATE CRIME STATISTICS ACT (Senate February 8, 1990)
Congressional Record [S1069]
American Jewish Congress, Washington, DC, July 14, 1989.
Dear Senator: On behalf of the American Jewish Congress and its 50,000 members
nationwide, I urge you to support the Hate Crimes Statistics Act (S. 419) without
weakening amendments when this important legislation is brought to the Senate floor.
The Hate Crime Statistics Act would direct the Department of Justice to collect and
publish, for five years, statistics on crimes which manifest prejudice based on race,
religion, ethnicity or sexual orientation. The Department of Justice has expressed strong
support for the bill. The House of Representatives overwhelmingly passed companion
legislation, H.R. 1048, on June 27.
We urge you to oppose a Sense of the Senate Resolution that Senator Jesse Helms will
likely propose as an amendment to S. 419. There are indications that Senator Helms will
propose the same clearly inappropriate amendment that he was prepared to introduce last
Congress if the Hate Crimes Statistics Act had been brought to the floor. The amendment is
not relevant to a data collection bill. Its only possible effect could be to indicate to
some that violence against homosexuals is somehow less egregious than violence against
As Senator Hatch stated in co-sponsoring S. 419, `[T]his act is only about Federal data
collection. The bill makes clear that it does not create any substantive rights or
causes of action. Senator Hatch and Senator Simon will introduce an amendment on the floor
stating that `Nothing in this bill promotes or encourages homosexuality. We ask you
to support this amendment.
Thank you for your time and consideration. Please do not hesitate to contact me if you
have any questions.
Steve Silbiger, Washington Representative.
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