Senate Passes Anti-Asian Hate Crimes Bill 94-1

Stock photo of a crime scene
The U.S. Senate approved today, by a vote of 94-1, a bill that will hopefully help law enforcement address anti-Asian hate crimes which have risen sharply during the COVID pandemic.

From Axios:

It’s a rare bipartisan endorsement of a bill by the 50-50 Senate, and comes in the wake of a spike of anti-Asian hate crimes over the last year. Sen. Josh Hawley (Mo.) was lone Republican to vote against the bill.

The bill will train law enforcement to better identify anti-Asian racism and appoint an official in the Justice Department to review and expedite COVID-19-related hate crime reports, among other measures.

Republicans originally balked at the bill when language initially referred to the legislation as “COVID-19 hate crimes.” But an amendment to just “hate crimes” assuaged those conerns.

The bill heads to the House now where it’s expected to pass before heading to President Biden’s desk.