Senators Coburn and Lee Fight to Halt Creation of a Women’s History Museum
Two of the U.S. Senate’s most conservative members are coming under fire for blocking a bill that calls for creating a national women’s history museum.
The bill, authored by Representatives Carolyn Maloney (D-New York) and Marsha Blackburn (R-Tennessee), would establish a bipartisan eight-member commission to study the building of such a museum. Passage of the legislation would not mean a green light for the project.
But Republican senators Tom Coburn of Oklahoma and Mike Lee of Utah are blocking the measure from moving forward in the Senate. They say the plan could result in the federal government paying for a large portion of the museum at a time of trillion-dollar debts.
“Consideration of the museum’s long-term costs for taxpayers has not been fully addressed,” Brian Phillips, a Lee spokesman, told The Hill in an email. “Until then, Sen. Lee will not support allowing the bill to move forward without full and complete debate on the Senate floor.” A spokesman for Coburn echoed Lee’s concerns.
Maloney says the holdup is “just outrageous.” She noted that other groups have established museums in Washington through the establishment of a commission. So why can’t advocates of women’s history do the same? “How come everyone else can have that model, but not us?” she told The Hill.
The Senate bill authorizing the commission would probably pass if it were to be brought to the floor, but there’s some question whether Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nevada) would want to devote time in the short session after the election to the proposal.
To Learn More:
GOP Senators Ripped for Blocking Museum (by Mike Lillis, The Hill)
House of Representatives Passes National Women’s History Museum Bill (National Women’s History Museum)
Senators Coburn and DeMint Halt Sale of Land for Women’s History Museum (by Noel Brinkerhoff, AllGov)
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