A transcript of openly gay Congressman Jared Polis saying he thought hate crimes passed

Posted on 07 Mar 2009 at 1:33pm

Since I posted the item below on Friday about openly gay Congressman Jared Polis, several people have attacked my credibility and suggested that I falsified the report to make Polis look bad. These people are dangerous because they care nothing about the truth and are simply out to protect Polis at all costs. Unfortunately for them, though, I have the whole thing on tape!!!

I’ve spent the last few hours trying to upload the audio to this blog, but I’ve been unsuccessful, so it will have to wait until Monday when I have some tech support. For now, I’ll just post the transcript of the exchange between Polis and Randy Brown of Livingston, who was talking about how he wants to start a chapter of Stonewall Democrats in Polk County, northeast of Houston. Here it is:

RANDY BROWN: Is Washington aware of the fact that people may get hurt? Because we might get hurt in the process of trying to just come out of the closet, just trying to help the process along. It’s a very, very frightening thing.
JARED POLIS: Have your local law enforcement agencies been helfpful in offering you protection when you feel threatened?
BROWN: No.
POLIS: They haven’t?
BROWN: No.
POLIS: This is one of the reasons we have a federal hate crimes law, for that very reason. Sometimes in some conservative areas they don’t prosecute hate crimes, so we have on the books a law that allows the federal government to prosecute those if your local DA refuses to. So you might want to report it to your federal attorney general for your area if you feel threatened and the local authorities are not investigating or don’t seem to care. You can turn to the federal government for investigation of potential hate crimes.
BROWN: They generally throw hate crimes right out the court window.
POLIS: Well, that’s what your local, that’s what the state does, but I’m saying there is a federal recourse for that. That’s the very reason we did it.
[AT THIS POINT, TEXAS STONEWALL PRESIDENT DAN GRANEY STANDS UP AND TELLS POLIS THAT THE MATTHEW SHEPARD ACT DIDN’T PASS.]
POLIS: Oh, it didn’t pass? OK. So we still need to pass it? OK. So we’ll try to pass that one for you, too. But that’s why we need it. And of course Obama supports that, our Congress supports that, our Senate supports that. I thought we did pass it, so we will try to get that. But that’s exactly why we need it though, because in some of the areas where gays and lesbians do feel terrorized every day, the local authorities are in league with the forces of hate. And this would, when we pass it — thanks for pointing that out — give you recourse to go to the federal government to investigate hate crimes in your area, and that’s why it’s so important.

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