CONGRESSWOMAN ELISE STEFANIK
H.Res. 129 is being considered on the floor under suspension of the rules, requiring a two-thirds majority vote for passage. This legislation was introduced by Representative Dennis Cardoza (D-CA) on February 4, 2009.
H.Res. 129 resolves that the House of Representatives "recognizes the historical significance of the Merced Assembly Center to the Nation and the importance of establishing an appropriate memorial at that site to serve as a place for remembering the hardships endured by Japanese-Americans, so that the United States remains vigilant in protecting our Nation's core values of equality, due process of law, justice, and fundamental fairness."
In February 1942, President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed Executive Order No. 9066, which authorized the internment of United States citizens and legal residents of Japanese ancestry during World War II. Approximately 120,000 Japanese-Americans were interned in camps during the war.
Japanese-Americans in parts of Washington, Oregon, California, and southern Arizona were ordered to report to assembly centers before being removed to more permanent war relocation centers. The Merced Assembly Center, located in Merced, California, was the reporting site for 4,669 Japanese-Americans, including Congressman Mike Honda (D-CA).
A Merced Assembly Center Commemorative Committee has been charged with the task of establishing a memorial to recognize the historic events that took place at the Merced Assembly Center. The unveiling ceremony for the memorial at the Merced Assembly Center will take place on February 21, 2009.