Congress Votes in Favor of Matthew Shepard Act

Editor’s note: This article was initially published in The Daily Gazette, Swarthmore’s online, daily newspaper founded in Fall 1996. As of Fall 2018, the DG has merged with The Phoenix. See the about page to read more about the DG.

Despite opposition from conservative groups and even President Bush himself, yesterday the Senate voted 60 to 39 to end debate on the Matthew Shepard Act and the Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act (HR 1592). If approved by the President, who in the past has called the law “unnecessary”, the Hate Crimes Prevention Act will make it easier for law enforcement officials to prosecute those who commit hate crimes, including those motivated by real or perceived sexual identity. It will also enable federal agencies to step in when local ones are unable or unwilling to prosecute these crimes. The act is named after Matthew Shepard, who was murdered in Wyoming nine years ago for being homosexual.

Read the Human Rights Campaign press release about the vote
Learn more about the Matthew Shepard Act
Read a letter outlining the views of some opponents of HR 1592


  1. Hey, thanks for this article, as it was concise, but quite informative. I sure hope that Ms. Logan continues to write many many articles for the Gazette!

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