Push for hate crime laws fail again in Indiana legislature

Indiana will remain one of just five states without a hate crimes law after key lawmakers in the GOP-dominated Senate announced Tuesday that they were abandoning a bill targeting crimes motivated by bias.

Posted: Jan 30, 2018 10:12 PM

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Indiana will remain one of just five states without a hate crimes law after key lawmakers in the GOP-dominated Senate announced Tuesday that they were abandoning a bill targeting crimes motivated by bias.


Leaders of Indiana’s GOP-dominated Statehouse have consistently opposed hate crimes legislation. But that changed this year in the wake of clashes between white supremacists and counter-demonstrators in Charlottesville, Virginia, that left one woman dead in August.

The bill by Republican Sen. Sue Glick had support from GOP leaders, including House Speaker Brian Bosma and Senate leader David Long. Then on Tuesday, the chairman of a key Senate committee decided to not take a vote on the bill.

“It’s a matter of peoples’ opinions. We just couldn’t come to consensus,” Long, of Fort Wayne, said late at a press conference announcing the effort was done for the year.

A deep thread of social conservatism runs throughout the state and lawmakers, headed into an election year, faced intense pressure from activists who argue that creating a hate crimes law would create a special protected class of victims.

At the same time, much of Indiana’s business community was in lock-step support of the measure, which they say is important to lure talent and new business to the state.

Indianapolis was named one of 20 finalists competing to be the location of a second Amazon headquarters. A coalition of central Indiana municipal officials, including Republicans, had pushed for a hate crimes law in hopes of making the state more appealing.

Despite his support for the measure, Long dismissed their worries.

“I really don’t think it should affect anything,” said Long. “Nor do I think we should tailor all of our legislation in hopes that a company would locate here. I would hope they’d be coming to Indiana because we are a welcoming state, because we have a great economy and we have low cost of living.”

The bill by Glick, a former county prosecutor from LaGrange County, would have specifically allowed a judge to take into account whether a crime was motivated by someone’s race, religion, color, sex, gender identity, disability, national origin, ancestry, sexual orientation or ethnicity. It would also require such crimes to be reported to the FBI. Currently, Indiana law enforcement agencies are not required to do so.

Advocates say anecdotal accounts suggest the number of so-called bias crimes are on the rise and the Southern Poverty Law Center reports 26 active hate groups in the state.

Democratic Sen. Greg Taylor, of Indianapolis, ripped Republicans for being content with the status quo.

“What we did today was say to companies like Amazon ... ‘We don’t need your business, we don’t need your economic development, we don’t need your jobs,’” said Taylor. “We are comfortable with the status quo.”

Terre Haute
Clear
59° wxIcon
Hi: 84° Lo: 58°
Feels Like: 59°
Robinson
Clear
57° wxIcon
Hi: 83° Lo: 55°
Feels Like: 57°
Indianapolis
Clear
63° wxIcon
Hi: 83° Lo: 60°
Feels Like: 63°
Rockville
Clear
58° wxIcon
Hi: 83° Lo: 57°
Feels Like: 58°
Casey
Clear
65° wxIcon
Hi: 83° Lo: 59°
Feels Like: 65°
Brazil
Clear
64° wxIcon
Hi: 83° Lo: 58°
Feels Like: 64°
Marshall
Clear
64° wxIcon
Hi: 83° Lo: 55°
Feels Like: 64°
Nice Days Ahead
WTHI Planner
WTHI Temps
WTHI Radar

WTHI Events

 

Illinois Coronavirus Cases

(Widget updates once daily at 7 p.m. CT)

Cases: 1387679

Reported Deaths: 25490
CountyCasesDeaths
Cook55590210427
DuPage923181318
Will768831028
Lake683111011
Kane59389804
Winnebago34064501
Madison30904526
McHenry29175294
St. Clair28271519
Peoria23440339
Champaign21090153
Sangamon19073237
McLean18544187
Tazewell17213304
Rock Island15238328
Kankakee14533216
Kendall1327598
LaSalle12767249
Macon10991211
DeKalb10101121
Vermilion9993141
Adams8659126
Williamson7570134
Whiteside7196174
Boone682977
Ogle620583
Grundy598678
Clinton578791
Coles5763100
Knox5640153
Jackson509865
Henry507370
Livingston489691
Woodford481982
Stephenson481585
Macoupin478288
Effingham476472
Franklin454778
Marion4512117
Jefferson4417122
Monroe438094
Lee419453
Randolph416187
Fulton405159
Logan396063
Morgan393082
Christian383675
Montgomery379074
Bureau378383
Fayette322055
Perry319960
Iroquois313167
McDonough290151
Jersey271652
Douglas260536
Saline260157
Lawrence241127
Shelby232337
Union227140
Crawford214526
Bond208824
Cass203027
Ford188348
Warren183748
Clark183633
Jo Daviess182624
Pike181753
Wayne180753
Hancock180131
Carroll178037
Richland176940
Edgar176440
White170226
Washington164825
Moultrie162928
De Witt157129
Mason154145
Piatt152314
Clay149543
Mercer149334
Johnson147316
Greene145334
Massac135840
Wabash135512
Cumberland130019
Menard124812
Jasper116118
Marshall108219
Hamilton84215
Schuyler7797
Brown7276
Pulaski6997
Stark64824
Edwards57612
Henderson53014
Calhoun5292
Scott4881
Putnam4863
Alexander47311
Gallatin4684
Hardin39112
Pope3274
Out of IL50
Unassigned02420

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

(Widget updates once daily at 8 p.m. ET)

Cases: 749532

Reported Deaths: 13746
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion1030911775
Lake554681006
Allen41636691
St. Joseph36947564
Hamilton36527416
Elkhart29363459
Tippecanoe22862225
Vanderburgh22542400
Porter19331325
Johnson18405388
Hendricks17588317
Clark13200193
Madison13120344
Vigo12604253
LaPorte12394221
Monroe12163175
Delaware10947198
Howard10263225
Kosciusko9614119
Hancock8549144
Bartholomew8162157
Warrick7854156
Floyd7772180
Grant7229179
Wayne7155201
Boone6917103
Morgan6736141
Dubois6211118
Marshall6206116
Cass5991108
Henry5894108
Dearborn588978
Noble580186
Jackson508674
Shelby500897
Lawrence4732121
Gibson444093
Harrison440773
Clinton440055
DeKalb438785
Montgomery434690
Whitley406042
Huntington402281
Steuben399259
Miami392768
Jasper386954
Knox375790
Putnam372160
Wabash360583
Ripley346570
Adams344955
Jefferson335685
White330253
Daviess3031100
Wells295181
Decatur289992
Greene286385
Fayette284864
Posey273735
LaGrange272872
Scott269955
Clay265848
Washington244934
Randolph244683
Jennings235149
Spencer234231
Starke227558
Fountain218647
Sullivan213943
Owen211058
Fulton201542
Jay200932
Carroll193420
Orange188055
Perry186937
Rush175726
Vermillion173644
Franklin170235
Tipton165846
Parke149016
Pike138034
Blackford136132
Pulaski120247
Newton112736
Brown103943
Crawford102316
Benton101014
Martin91515
Warren83615
Switzerland8098
Union72810
Ohio57811
Unassigned0420