WASHINGTON, D.C. (WHTM) — All but one Pennsylvania House Representative signed off Thursday on President Joe Biden’s COVID-19 Hate Crimes Act which comes in response to the dramatic rise in hate crimes against Asian-Americans and Pacific Islanders.
Biden says lawmakers, who seem to agree on little else, came together against hate and racism.
The new law will provide federal grants to help local law enforcement improve investigations by identifying bias-driven incidents and ensuring cases no longer go under-reported.
While the bill received broad bipartisan support, only one lawmaker from Pennsylvania voted against the legislation — Local Republican Congressman Scott Perry.
State Rep. Patty Kim tweeted about the vote overnight saying Perry won by nearly 26,000 votes in his last election and has more than 28,000 Asian Americans in his district, including Kim herself.
On his Facebook page, Perry fought back saying “Every American deserves equal justice, and no one deserves any more protection or prosecution than another.”
He added, “While I unequivocally condemn hatred of anyone for any reason, we already have laws in America against crimes.”
Vice President Kama Harris said there were more than 6,000 hate incidents from March 2020 to March 2021.
“The work to address injustice, wherever it exists, remains the work ahead,” Harris said.