Missouri House Republicans defund public libraries: report

Missouri House Republicans defund public libraries: report
JEFFERSON CITY, MO - MAY 17: Members of the Missouri House of Representatives work on the House floor on May 17, 2019 in Jefferson City, Missouri. Tension and protest arose after the Missouri House of Representatives passed a bill to ban abortions after 8 weeks of pregnancy. (Photo by Michael B. Thomas/Getty Images).

Republicans in the Missouri State House of Representatives on Tuesday voted to strip all public libraries of their funding a week after lawmakers debated the budget proposal that Governor Mike Parson submitted to the legislature.

The version that will now head to the State Senate eliminated "not only the $4.5 million Parson had slated for libraries, but also costs for diversity initiatives, childcare and pre-kindergarten programs," Heartland Signal reported.

The move appears to be a retaliatory response to legal action taken by the American Civil Liberties Union.

READ MORE: Missouri Dem. lawmaker blasts state GOP for 'dystopian future' proposal to defund public libraries

"Missouri House Budget Committee leader Rep. Cody Smith (R-Carthage) proposed cutting library aid due to a recent lawsuit filed against the state last February," Heartland Signal explained.

"The lawsuit — filed by the ACLU of Missouri on behalf of the Missouri Association of School Librarians and the Missouri Library Association — seeks to declare Senate Bill 775 unconstitutional, a bill that has resulted in over 300 books getting banned from school libraries, many of which include LGBTQ characters or racial justice themes," the outlet added.

READ MORE: 'Are people seriously this stupid?': Missouri woman and pastor claim 'miracle' of three regrown toes

Heartland Signal's report continues here.

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