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May 9, 2006

Pryce Votes to Preserve the
Dignity of Military Funerals

Washington, DC – Today, Congresswoman Deborah Pryce (R-Upper Arlington) released the following statement pursuant to House passage of H.R. 5037, the Respect for America’s Fallen Heroes Act, legislation preventing protestors from harassing mourners at the funerals of military men and women who die while serving their nation:

“Today’s vote is about ensuring dignity and sanctity for families burying a loved one who gave their lives in defense of our nation. As certain protesters do not recognize basic levels of humanity and decency, the bill has become necessary to preserve the reverence of a military funeral, and allow families to pay their final respects to their loved ones.”

“I am proud of our efforts today, and comforted in knowing that some things remain sacrosanct.”

Pryce was a cosponsor of H.R. 5037, which prohibits any demonstration at military funerals at national cemeteries beginning 60 minutes before and continuing for 60 minutes after the service; it further keeps protestors at least 500 feet from the mourners.

The legislation responds to recent efforts by a radical anti-gay group intent upon disrupting the funerals of fallen service members, attempting to exploit the event to push its hateful message of intolerance. The bill fully conforms with the parameters established by the U.S. Supreme Court in regulating the time, place and manner of demonstrations, has bipartisan support, and enjoys the backing of numerous veterans organizations.