Scott on anti-lynching law signing: ‘We finally did the right thing’
WASHINGTON (WCSC/AP) - U.S. Sen. Tim Scott released a statement Tuesday after President Joe Biden signed Scott’s anti-lynching legislation into law.
The Emmett Till Anti-Lynching Act makes lynching a federal hate crime, providing penalties of a fine and jail time for up to 30 years.
“For the last four years, I’ve worked hard with my friends across the aisle on anti-lynching legislation — legislation that has failed in Congress an astounding 200 times,” Scott said. “After a century of unsuccessful attempts, we finally did the right thing in passing the Emmett Till Anti-Lynching Act — not on behalf of Republicans or Democrats, but on behalf of all Americans. I’m proud to have played a part in passing this historic bill and making clear that we should never tolerate violence and hatred spread by those with evil in their hearts.”
The law is named after the Black teenager whose killing in Mississippi in the summer of 1955 became a galvanizing moment in the civil rights era. His grieving mother insisted on an open casket to show everyone how her son had been brutalized.
During remarks in the Rose Garden, Biden stressed how the violent deaths of Black Americans were used to intimidate them and prevent them from voting. The new law makes it possible to prosecute a crime as a lynching when a conspiracy to commit a hate crime leads to death or serious bodily injury.
Sen. Scott first introduced anti-lynching legislation in 2018 and again in 2019, along with Senator Cory Booker (D-N.J.) and then-Senator Kamala Harris (D-Calif.). The bill passed the Senate twice with unanimous consent but was held up in the House of Representatives.
Copyright 2022 WCSC. The Associated Press contributed to this report. All rights reserved.