U.S Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) today made the following statement regarding his opposition to the Defense Authorization bill. Graham is a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee.
"The Hate Crimes provision has no place on a bill authorizing the operations of the Department of Defense. As a result of its inclusion, I could not vote in support of the bill. I am truly disappointed this provision was added to a bill that is supposed to be about supporting our troops.
"We all agree that hate crimes are wrong. That is why they are already illegal. There is simply no need to separate out a particular class of crimes for special consideration. Whatever the motivation behind criminal acts, they deserve to be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.
"Today, Congress once again overstepped its bounds. The inclusion of this provision was an unnecessary and ill-advised power grab by the federal government."