WASHINGTON, DC – Bipartisan efforts to urge President Bush to keep his 2000 campaign pledge to properly characterize the Armenian Genocide as “genocide” continued to grow this week, with over 100 U.S. Representatives having cosigned a Congressional letter to the White House, reported the Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA).
Initiated by Congressional Armenian Caucus Co-Chairs Frank Pallone (D-NJ) and Joe Knollenberg (R-MI), the letter calls on President Bush to join House members “in reaffirming the United States record on the Armenian Genocide” in his annual April 24th commemorative statement. “By properly recognizing the terrible atrocities committed against the Armenian people as ‘genocide’ in your statement, you will honor the many Americans who helped launch the unprecedented U.S. diplomatic, political and humanitarian campaign to end the carnage and protect the survivors.”
Members of Congress joining Representatives Pallone and Knollenberg as co-signers of the letter, as of Wednesday, March 30th, include: Neil Abercrombie (D-HI), Gary Ackerman (D-NY), Tom Allen (D-ME), Robert Andrews (D-NJ), Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Charles Bass (R-NH), Melissa Bean (D-IL), Xavier Becerra (D-CA), Shelley Berkley (D-NV), Howard Berman (D-CA), Michael Bilirakis (R-FL), Sanford Bishop (D-GA), Tim Bishop (D-NY), Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), Mary Bono (R-CA), Jeb Bradley (R-NH), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Ken Calvert (R-CA), Lois Capps (D-CA), Michael Capuano (D-MA), Benjamin Cardin (D-MD), Dennis Cardoza (D-CA), John Conyers (D-MI), Jim Costa (D-CA), Jerry Costello (D-IL), Joseph Crowley (D-NY), Susan Davis (D-CA), William Delahunt (D-MA), Rosa DeLauro (D-CT), Mike Doyle (D-PA), David Dreier (R-CA), Eliot Engel (D-NY), Anna Eshoo (D-CA), Bob Filner (D-CA), Mark Foley (R-FL), Barney Frank (D-MA), Rodney Frelinghuysen (R-NJ), Scott Garrett (R-NJ), Raul Grijalva (D-AZ), Luis Gutierrez (D-IL), Maurice Hinchey (D-NY), Rush Holt (D-NJ), Steny Hoyer (D-MD), Steve Israel (D-NY), Stephanie Tubbs Jones (D-OH), Marcy Kaptur (D-OH), Sue Kelly (R-NY), Patrick Kennedy (D-RI), Dale Kildee (D-MI), Dennis Kucinich (D-OH), James Langevin (D-RI), John Larson (D-CT), Steven LaTourette (R-OH), Sander Levin (D-MI), Frank LoBiondo (R-NJ), Zoe Lofgren (D-CA), Stephen Lynch (D-MA), Carolyn Maloney (D-NY), Edward Markey (D-MA), Carolyn McCarthy (D-NY), Betty McCollum (D-MN), Thaddeus McCotter (R-MI), Jim McDermott (D-WA), James McGovern (D-MA), Michael McNulty (D-NY), Martin Meehan (D-MA), Robert Menendez (D-NJ), Candice Miller (R-MI), George Miller (D-CA), Grace Napolitano (D-CA), Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC), Devin Nunes (R-CA), Collin Peterson (D-MN), George Radanovich (R-CA), Mike Rogers (R-MI), Steven Rothman (D-NJ), Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-CA), Edward Royce (R-CA), Linda Sanchez (D-CA), Loretta Sanchez (D-CA), H. James Saxton (R-NJ), Adam Schiff (D-CA), Joe Schwarz (R-MI), E. Clay Shaw (R-FL), Christopher Shays (R-CT), Brad Sherman (D-CA), John Shimkus (R-IL), Christopher Smith (R-NJ), Mark Souder (R-IN), John Sweeney (R-NY), Edolphus Towns (D-NY), Mark Udall (D-CO), Christopher Van Hollen (D-MD), Peter Visclosky (D-IN), Maxine Waters (D-CA), Diane Watson (D-CA), Henry Waxman (D-CA), Anthony Weiner (D-NY), Joe Wilson (R-SC), and Lynn Woolsey (D-CA).
Over the past weeks, in statements on the House floor, a number of House Members have already spoken out about the importance clear and unambiguous U.S. reaffirmation of the Armenian Genocide, including Armenian Caucus Co-Chair Frank Pallone and Reps. Michael Bilirakis, Barney Frank, Patrick Kennedy, James Langevin, and George Radanovich.
Support for the letter is expected to grow considerably, as the Armenian American community continues its grassroots campaign to urge legislators to become signatories. The ANCA launched a WebFax campaign last week, which, in addition to calling on House Members to cosign this letter, urges activists to appeal directly to President Bush on this key issue.