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August 29, 2011Press Item
Yesterday marked the 48th anniversary of the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom, when more than a quarter million people came to our nation’s capital to demand equality for all Americans, regardless of race, and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. gave his landmark ‘I Have a Dream’ Speech. Armed with the power of nonviolence, their efforts helped end a system of racial discrimination. Let us mark this anniversary by honoring the legacy of these civil rights activists who pursued justice for all Americans and rededicate ourselves to equality and fairness. While we have come a long way in achieving racial equality since the March 48 years ago, disparities in employment and opportunity still exist today. Democrats are committed to closing that gap and promoting equality and opportunity through our Make It In America plan, an effort to create well-paying, middle-class jobs so that every American has the chance to succeed.
August 26, 2011Press Item
“Today, America marks Women’s Equality Day: the anniversary of the day women secured the right to vote through the 19th Amendment to the Constitution. This amendment was only passed as a result of the work of generations of women, who struggled for a full and equal voice in our democracy...
July 26, 2011Press Item
Twenty-one years ago today, the first President Bush signed into law the Americans with Disabilities Act. I was proud to help write this important law and work for its passage through Congress. The ADA made our nation a world leader in the inclusion of people with disabilities, and it came about because Republicans and Democrats, disability advocates and business leaders, all realized that we gain as a nation when we help all of our people live up to their potential.
July 7, 2011Press Item
Last year, Congress voted to repeal the counterproductive and unjust policy of ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.’ But despite overwhelming evidence that repeal will strengthen our military, despite strong support for repeal among our troops and the American people, despite support for repeal from military leaders like the Secretary of Defense and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and despite a federal court order that the government stop enforcing DADT immediately, Republicans are still pushing to keep this shameful policy in place.
June 17, 2011Press Item
Nearly three years after President Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation, Major General Gordon Granger arrived at the city of Galveston, Texas on June 19, 1865 to deliver news that the nation’s slaves were free. The announcement set off celebrations in the streets as freed slaves rejoiced. At last, the furthest reaches of the slaveholding states were feeling the effects of the abolition of slavery; and today, we celebrate that day of liberation as Juneteenth. Each year, we have the opportunity to reflect on the centuries-long struggle to achieve freedom, honor the legacy of civil rights activists who have pursued justice for all Americans, and celebrate the achievements and contributions of African-Americans throughout history. Let us pay tribute to the work and sacrifice of these Americans and recommit ourselves to ensuring freedom, equality, and opportunity for all.  
April 12, 2011Press Item
On Equal Pay Day we recognize the extra amount of time a woman must work – from January 1, 2010 to April 12, 2011 – for her wages to equal what a man could earn during 2010 alone. Today, women earn just 75% of what men earn, and the wage gap is even greater for minority women and older women. With women making a growing share of family income, this inequity is felt by families throughout the country. It is past time for this injustice to come to an end.
April 8, 2011Press Item
Democrats have offered on the House Floor five times a clean continuing resolution to keep the government open as negotiations on a full year continuing resolution continue. So far, even though Democrats have gone 70 percent of the way to Republicans’ position, Republicans refuse to compromise over their divisive social agenda. As a result, Republicans are risking a shutdown that will harm the economy and negatively impact Americans.
April 5, 2011Press Item
Sigmund Livingston, the founder of the Anti-Defamation League, reflected that anti-Semitism is ‘an expression of hatred the seeds of which were planted in the days of childhood, when the mind is subtly conditioned for the reception of libels and fictions.’ He understood that anti-Semitism feeds on ignorance and can take root very early in life. And he created the Anti-Defamation League because he believed in the power of truth, boldly and unapologetically stated, to overcome that ignorance. I believe that that mission has taken on a special importance at this moment in history.
March 31, 2011Press Item
Today, America honors the pioneering labor leader César Chávez on what would have been his 84th birthday. Chávez spent his life fighting for the rights and dignity of Latino farmworkers and the underprivileged. He is rightly remembered as one of the greatest civil rights leaders of the 20th century. We can honor his legacy by carrying forward the principles for which he worked so hard: workers’ right to organize, fair and safe labor conditions, freedom from racial discrimination, and opportunity for all Americans.
March 24, 2011Press Item
As a lead co-sponsor of the ADA Amendments Act, I am pleased that the EEOC has issued final regulations today that will ensure all Americans with disabilities will be able to invoke the full protections provided under the ADA,” said Democratic Whip Hoyer. “The ADA Amendments Act restored the intent of the original ADA law to protect anyone with a disability, even if they take steps to mitigate their condition. The regulations issued today uphold the law and open the doors of opportunity to everyone."
March 18, 2011Press Item
Now it’s time to write a new generation of stories. They will be written by young men and women, like the young man who wrote me last fall. They will serve openly and proudly. They will be leaders in the civil rights movement of our time. They will endure sacrifice and separation from their loved ones—so that the rest of us don’t have to. Some of them will die for their country—so that the rest of us don’t have to. Let’s recognize their service—and every American’s service—for the precious gift it is. Let us give every American’s service the honor it deserves.
March 9, 2011Press Item
Today, I attended a meeting of the House Bipartisan Legal Advisory Group, which voted to intervene in litigation pertaining to the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) in court. I voted against this decision. I believe that the Administration is correct in concluding that DOMA is unconstitutional and discriminatory. There is ample precedent for the Justice Department’s decision not to defend this statute: since 1979, both Democratic and Republican Administrations have declined to defend acts of Congress on more than 50 occasions. In fact, it is rare for the House to intervene in defense of statutes that the Justice Department has declined to defend. I am disappointed in Republicans’ decision today.
March 4, 2011Press Item
The Speaker has indicated he is going to convene the House Bipartisan Legal Advisory Group to decide whether to intervene in cases concerning the Defense of Marriage Act. I believe the Administration has correctly concluded that the statute is discriminatory and unconstitutional. I therefore will oppose intervening in cases regarding this Act.  
March 1, 2011Press Item
This month marks Women’s History Month, an opportunity to remember and celebrate generations of women who have made indelible contributions to our nation. Across all areas of society, women have made a real and lasting impact, which serves as an inspiration to all those that follow.
November 19, 2010Press Item
I am pleased that the Senate passed legislation today that would provide funding for settlement of both the Pigford and Cobell class action lawsuits – an important step toward finally correcting these blights on our Nation’s history...
October 28, 2010Press Item
House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer released the following statement today in recognition of President Obama signing the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act into law one year ago:
October 8, 2010Press Item
“The promise of the Americans with Disabilities Act was to open the doors of opportunity in a country that prides itself on being the land of opportunity. Twenty years after the passage of the ADA, major advancements in technology now provide opportunities for greater accessibility – and pose new challenges - for individuals with hearing or visual impairments...
October 12, 2010Press Item
“Today's ruling is another step toward equality for gays and lesbians in the military who serve our nation with great honor.  The ‘Don't Ask, Don't Tell’ policy has already caused the dismissal of 13,500 servicemen and women, many with important skills and experiences that are needed to keep our military strong and our country safe..
September 16, 2010Press Item
I am honored to receive this award, and to join with you in support of the hard work that will bring a Martin Luther King, Jr. memorial to the hallowed ground of the National Mall. It will be a great day when Dr. King, not far from where he delivered his famous speech on the Mall in 1963, is honored among our nation's founders.