Catholic League president Bill Donohue comments on U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder’s remark that we need a new hate crimes bill because of the recent killings in Kansas and Washington, D.C.:

Holder says, “We will not tolerate murder, or the threat of violence, masquerading as political activism.” It would be more accurate to say that the U.S. doesn’t need a political activist masquerading as Attorney General.

The wife of Scott Roeder, the ex-con who killed abortionist George Tiller, said that while he himself didn’t think he was mentally ill, “everyone else did.” His brother David agreed with this assessment.

Virginia Gerker, cousin of James von Brunn, the ex-con who killed a security guard at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, said that her entire family believed he was mentally ill.

Roeder was never involved in any pro-life organization, and von Brunn is an old man who was as much anti-Christian as he was anti-Semitic. In other words, it is nothing if not demagogic for Holder to exploit these two recent tragedies—committed by madmen, not political activists—as a rationale to promote this highly politicized piece of legislation.

The reason why the Catholic League continues to be concerned about this bill is due to the fact that we still don’t have assurances that religious speech won’t be punished if it passes. While it is true that the Senate version has language protecting religious speech, the House version does not. Holder should be spending his time endorsing the Senate version instead of stoking the primordial fears of Obama activists.

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