Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.) released the following statement after the Justice for Victims of Lynching Act passed the Senate yesterday and continued to the House of Representatives. The legislation, which Senator Cortez Masto cosponsored, would make lynching a federal crime.
“For far too long the United States Congress has failed to say clearly that lynching is a crime and to recognize it as a despicable act of terror against African-Americans and other people of color. This bill is a step toward remembering the victims of lynching and clearly identifying lynching as a stain on American history. Congress must ensure that those using this racist tool of white supremacy to employ terror are prosecuted and acknowledge that it is still alive today. It’s long past time for Congress to act to make lynching a crime and reckon with our country’s past.”
Senator Cortez Masto cosponsored the Justice for Victims of Lynching Act during the 115th Congress. The legislation amends the United States Code to criminalize lynching through existing federal civil rights statutes.