Presidential candidate and California Senator Kamala Harris spoke at the Iowa Democratic Party’s Liberty and Justice Celebration this past week. She clearly laid out what the stakes are for 2020 and urged us to fight back – alongside her.
To win, we are going to have to fight against those who have been trying to push hate and division among us and have Americans turn on each other.
To win, we’re going to have to fight for what I know in my heart and in my soul to be true — which is in the beauty and diversity of who we are as a nation, we all have so much more in common than what separates us.
And to win, we are going to need a nominee on that stage with Donald Trump who has the ability to go toe to toe with Donald Trump — and Iowa, you are looking at her.
It is time that we fight. And this is a fight that is about all of us.
Because, yes, a harm against any one of us is a harm against all of us. And here’s the bottom line. I do believe that when we overcome these injustices, we will unlock the promise of America and the potential of the American people. And I do believe that this is what we want and need. That is the America I see. That is the America I believe in. That is the America I know us to be. And that is why I am running for president of the United States.
Promotional still from the 1939 film Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, published in National Board of Review Magazine; November 1939.
On December 20, 2018, the Justice for Victims of Lynching Act of 2018 passed the Senate by unanimous consent. After 200 attempts since 1882, this was the first federal anti-lynching legislation to pass in the Senate. It was passed again by unanimous consent in the 116th Congress in February 2019 and sent to the House, where it has been referred to the Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, and Homeland Security. (Justice for Victims of Lynching Act of 2019) If passed by the House and signed by the Current pResident, the legislation will be historic and unfortunately, still necessary:
Sens. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., Cory Booker, D-N.J., and Tim Scott, R-S.C., drafted the bipartisan legislation, which defines the crime as “the willful act of murder by a collection of people assembled with the intention of committing an act of violence upon any person.” It also classifies lynching as a hate crime that would warrant enhanced sentences.
“It’s a travesty that despite repeated attempts to do so, Congress still hasn’t put anti-lynching legislation on the books,” Booker said in a statement. “This bill will right historical wrongs by acknowledging our country’s stained past and codifying into law our commitment to abolishing this shameful practice.” African-American Senators Introduce Anti-Lynching Bill
I was reminded of this legislation when I was considering the lengths to which white supremacists will go to retain power, which in turn reminded me of a previous anti-lynching bill and the 6-week filibuster. That story follows.
The weekly Fighting Back post is also an Open News Thread.
The Weekly Democratic Party Address is being managed by the Senate side of Congress this week and is not available at publication time. So here is a video from a few weeks ago with Senator Kamala Harris throwing down the gauntlet on the DREAMers.
(10/25/2017: Speaking at a press conference alongside a group of Senate and House Democrats, and University Presidents and Chancellors in support of the Dream Act, U.S. Senator Kamala D. Harris today pledged to vote against any end-of-year spending bill if it does not include a solution for the more than 700,000 recipients of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.)
“I will not vote for an end-of-year spending bill until we are clear about what we are going to do to protect and take care of our DACA young people in this country”