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S. 1721: Gay and Trans Panic Defense Prohibition Act of 2019

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About the bill

Should a straight murderer of a gay or trans person be able to claim “He (or she) was coming on to me” as a valid legal defense?


The gay-panic or trans-panic defense is a legal strategy in which a defendant argues that they committed a crime against a gay or trans person as a result of fear or shock. Some have described it as the “I only killed him because he was coming on to me” defense.

The strategy has been successfully used in about half of all states since its introduction in the 1960s, including some perhaps-surprising states such as California, Massachusetts, New Jersey, and New York.

In the last few years, though, amid a broader groundswell of support for the LGBT community and LGBT rights, the tide ...

Sponsor and status

Edward “Ed” Markey

Sponsor. Junior Senator for Massachusetts. Democrat.

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Last Updated: Jun 5, 2019
Length: 4 pages
Jun 5, 2019
116th Congress (2019–2021)

Introduced on Jun 5, 2019

This bill is in the first stage of the legislative process. It was introduced into Congress on June 5, 2019. It will typically be considered by committee next before it is possibly sent on to the House or Senate as a whole.

3% chance of being enacted according to Skopos Labs (details)


Jun 5, 2019

Bills and resolutions are referred to committees which debate the bill before possibly sending it on to the whole chamber.

If this bill has further action, the following steps may occur next:
Passed Committee

Passed Senate

Passed House

Signed by the President

S. 1721 is a bill in the United States Congress.

A bill must be passed by both the House and Senate in identical form and then be signed by the President to become law.

Bills numbers restart every two years. That means there are other bills with the number S. 1721. This is the one from the 116th Congress.

How to cite this information.

We recommend the following MLA-formatted citation when using the information you see here in academic work:

“S. 1721 — 116th Congress: Gay and Trans Panic Defense Prohibition Act of 2019.” 2019. August 4, 2020 <>

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