United States Congress
There is an Armenian Caucus in Congress with over a hundred members.
In the past US presidents and Congress have made open references to the Armenian Genocide. This stopped after the State Department began to undertake major efforts at preventing any such mention of the Armenian Genocide.
The current Armenian Genocide resolution, House Resolution 106, awaits introduction to the House of Representatives for a vote. More than half of the Representatives in the House have co-sponsored the bill, ensuring passage if it is introduced. Meanwhile, eight former secretaries of state have written a letter to the speaker of the house, asking her not to introduce the bill.
WASHINGTON, DC – Senator Joseph Biden, the senior Democrat serving on the Foreign Relations Committee and a respected voice on international affairs, has cosponsored the Armenian Genocide Resolution, S.Res.320, reported the Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA).
Along with the announcement this week that Senator Susan Collins will cosponsor the measure, this brings the total number of Senators supporting the resolution to twenty-two. “I am pleased to be a cosponsor of Senate Resolution 320, regarding the Armenian Genocide. It is my hope that by remembering the extent of this tragedy, we will double our efforts to prevent it from happening to others today and in the future,” said Senator Collins. The measure was introduced in November of last year by Senators John Ensign (R-NV) and Richard Durbin (D-IL).
"We are encouraged to see the growing support for the Armenian Genocide Resolution among senior Senators, including a number of potential 2008 presidential candidates - such as Senators Allen, Kerry, Biden, and Feingold," said Aram Hamparian, Executive Director of the ANCA.
Senator Ensign is the Vice Chairman of the Republican Steering Committee, the group that shapes the Senate Republican legislative agenda. Senator Durbin is the Democratic Whip, the second most senior position among Senate Democrats. Additional cosponsors include:
- George Allen (R-VA) - The Chairman of the Foreign Relation Committee’s Subcommittee on European Affairs, and a potential Presidential candidate in 2008.
- Joe Biden (D-DE) - The Ranking Member of the Foreign Relation Committee and a potential 2008 Presidential candidate.
- Barbara Boxer (D-CA) - Ranking Democrat on the Foreign Relations Committee's Subcommittee on Near Eastern and South Asian Affairs.
- Lincoln Chafee (R-RI) - The Chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee's Subcommittee on Near Eastern and South Asian Affairs.
- Norm Coleman (R-MN) - Chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee's Subcommittee on the Western Hemisphere and Homeland Security’s Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations.
- Susan Collins (R-ME) - Chairwoman of the Committee on Homeland Security and Government Affairs.
- Russell Feingold (D-WI) - The Ranking Democrat on the Foreign Relations Committee's Subcommittee on Africa and a potential 2008 Presidential candidate.
- Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) - Ranking Democrat on the Judiciary Committee's Subcommittee on Terrorism, Technology and Homeland Security.
- Tim Johnson (D-SD) - Member of the Appropriations Committee and Vice-Chair of the Ethics Committee.
- Ted Kennedy (D-MA) - Senior Democrat on the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee.
- John Kerry (D-MA) - Ranking Democrat on the Foreign Relations Committee's Subcommittee on East Asian and Pacific Affairs, as well as a past (2004) and potential future (2008) Presidential candidate.
- Herb Kohl (D-WI) - A senior member of the Appropriations Committee's Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice and State, the panel that allocates funding for the State Department.
- Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ) - A member of the Committee on Homeland Security and Government Affairs.
- Carl Levin (D-MI) - Ranking Democrat on the Armed Services Committee and a member of the Select Committee on Intelligence.
- Barbara Mikulski (D-MD) - A member of the Appropriations Committee's Subcommittee on Foreign Operations, the panel that allocates U.S. foreign aid.
- Jack Reed (D-RI) - The Ranking Democrat on the Armed Services Committee's Subcommittee on Emerging Threats and Capabilities.
- Ken Salazar (D-CO) - Newly-elected Senator serving on the Agriculture, Energy, and Veterans Affairs Committees.
- Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) - Member of the Budget, Banking, and Agriculture Committees.
- Olympia Snowe (R-ME) - Chairwoman of the Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship.
- John Sununu (R-NH) - Chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee's Subcommittee on International Operations and Terrorism.
The Senate measure is similar to a resolution, H.Res.316, introduced this June in the U.S. House by Reps. George Radanovich (R-CA), Adam Schiff (D-CA), and Congressional Armenian Caucus Co-Chairmen Frank Pallone (D-NJ) and Joe Knollenberg (R-MI). This measure has 145 cosponsors and was overwhelmingly adopted, along with a second Armenian Genocide Resolution, H.Con.Res.195, by the International Relations Committee on September 15th.
The resolution calls upon the President "to ensure that the foreign policy of the United States reflects appropriate understanding and sensitivity concerning issues related to human rights, ethnic cleansing, and genocide documented in the United States record relating to the Armenian Genocide." The resolution includes thirty detailed findings from past U.S. hearings, resolutions and Presidential statements on the Armenian Genocide from 1916 through the present, as well as references to statements by international bodies and organizations.
The Senate resolution has been referred to the Foreign Relations Committee for consideration.