Dems propose to boost DOJ funding by $41M

Senate Democrats unveiled a proposal Thursday to allocate an additional $41 million to Department of Justice (DOJ) programs that work to prevent bias-motivated attacks and discrimination following the mass shooting in Orlando on Sunday.

The Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act calls for an additional $30 million for the DOJ’s Civil Rights Division (CRT) and $11 million for the Community Relations Service (CRS).

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Sen. Tammy BaldwinTammy Suzanne BaldwinRecessions happen when presidents overlook key problems Trade wars and the over-valued dollar Overnight Health Care: Senate panel advances drug pricing bill amid GOP blowback | House panel grills Juul executives | Trump gives boost to state drug import plans | Officials say new migrant kids' shelter to remain open but empty MORE (D-Wis.), who introduced the bill with Sens. Barbara MikulskiBarbara Ann MikulskiLobbying World Only four Dem senators have endorsed 2020 candidates Raskin embraces role as constitutional scholar MORE (D-Md.) and Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii), called the mass shooting at the gay nightclub in Orlando on Sunday night a “cold reminder” that hate crimes are too common in America.

“We must have the courage to stand up, speak out and act,” she said in a statement. “When we turn a blind eye to intolerance and discrimination against any community or group we allow the things that fuel hate crimes to go unchecked. We must do more.”

The additional funding would allow the CRT to hire another 100 attorneys to focus on enforcing federal civil rights and hate crime laws and the CRS to hire 10 new mediation specialists.

The CRS helps state and local officials find solutions in places where tensions exist or hate crimes have occurred.

The Democrats' proposal, which increases DOJ funding by $197.4 million over fiscal 2016, comes on the heels of a 15-hour filibuster Democrats — led by Sen. Chris MurphyChristopher (Chris) Scott MurphyMurphy: Chance of deal on gun background checks bill 'less than 50-50' Murphy says White House still interested in improving background checks Hobbled NRA shows strength with Trump MORE (D-Conn.) — waged to protest Congress’s inaction on gun control.