Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Republicans and Lynching in 2005

In 2005, who wouldn't want to vote for a congressional resolution apologizing for not passing anti-lynching laws? A bunch of Republicans. And who wouldn't want a vote for such a resolution to come to an on the record roll call vote. The Senate Majority Leader, Republican Bill Frist. Simply amazing:
WASHINGTON — Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-Tenn.) refused repeated requests for a roll call vote that would have put senators on the record on a resolution apologizing for past failures to pass anti-lynching laws, officials involved in the negotiations said Tuesday.

[...]

As dozens of descendants of lynching victims watched from the Senate gallery, the resolution was adopted Monday evening under a voice vote procedure that did not require any senator's presence.

Eighty senators, however, had signed as co-sponsors, putting themselves on record as supporting the resolution. By the time the Senate recessed Tuesday evening, five other senators had added their names as co-sponsors, leaving 15 Republicans who had not.

[...]

But the group that was the driving force behind the resolution had asked Frist for a formal procedure that would have required all 100 senators to vote. And the group had asked that the debate take place during "business hours" during the week, instead of Monday evening, when most senators were traveling back to the capital.

Frist declined both requests, the group's chief counsel, Mark Planning, said Tuesday evening.

So here it is, 2005, and there are Republicans out there who refuse to put their name anti-lynching anything. Are they worried about losing the KKK vote? If co-sponsoring a resolution such as this, something that can be done after the vote, is politically dangerous for these Republicans, what does that say about who they represent? Who are these Senators. Here's the Lynching Wall of Shame:
Lamar Alexander (R-TN)
Robert Bennett (R-UT)
Thad Cochran (R-MS)
Kent Conrad (D-ND)
John Cornyn (R-TX)
Michael Crapo (R-ID)
Michael Enzi (R-WY)
Chuck Grassley (R-IA)
Judd Gregg (R-NH)
Orrin Hatch (R-UT)
Trent Lott (R-MS)
Lisa Murkowski (R-AK)
Richard Shelby (R-AL)
John Sununu (R-NH)
Craig Thomas (R-WY)
George Voinovich (R-OH)

So tell me again about how the Republican party is inclusive of minority rights?