House Republican Leader John Boehner (R-OH) issued the following statement on House Democrats’ Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act of 2009 (H.R. 1913):
“All violent crimes should be prosecuted vigorously, including crimes in which victims are targeted because of their race, color, religion, or national origin. The Democrats’ legislation, however, places a higher value on some lives compared to others. That is unconstitutional, and that is wrong. Republicans believe that all life was created equally, and all life should be defended equally.
“I am particularly concerned about the implications this legislation would have on religious groups expressing their beliefs. Simply put, this bill is not only a threat to the constitutional principle of equal justice under the law, but to religious freedom of speech as well. Members of Congress took an oath to uphold these bedrock principles, and we have the obligation to oppose this unconstitutional legislation.”