Washington, D.C. – The House of Representatives today approved the Community Safety and Security Act (H.R. 6691) by a vote of 247-152 to remedy a recent Supreme Court decision and strengthen public safety.
Earlier this year, in United States v. Dimaya, the Supreme Court ruled that a clause in the U.S. Code which defines “crime of violence” is unconstitutionally vague, making it necessary for Congress to specify circumstances when a criminal offense should be deemed a crime of violence. The Community Safety and Security Act, introduced by Congresswoman Karen Handel (R-Ga.) and a product of the House Judiciary Committee, addresses this Supreme Court ruling by explicitly stating which offenses are crimes of violence to avoid confusion. This includes crimes such as voluntary manslaughter, attempted kidnapping, lewd and lascivious acts upon a child, sexual assault, burglary, and assault.
House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) applauded today’s House approval of the Community Safety and Security Act in the statement below.
Chairman Goodlatte: “The primary duty of the federal government is to keep Americans safe, and the Community Safety and Security Act is an important part of this solemn responsibility. A recent Supreme Court decision ruled that the definition of ‘crime of violence’ is too vague under the law. It is up to Congress to fix this, and that is just what the Community Safety and Security Act does. This bill reinstates the ability of law enforcement to protect American citizens by putting those who commit serious crimes behind bars. It also ensures our criminal laws clearly lay out what types of conduct are subject to higher penalties, which could result in additional time in prison. I thank Congresswoman Handel for introducing this bill and call on the Senate to pass it without delay.”