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President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris meet with members of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus Executive Committee. Photo: Doug Mills-Pool/Getty Images

The Senate voted 94-1 on Thursday to pass legislation that aims to improve anti-Asian hate crime tracking and identification.

Why it matters: It's a rare bipartisan endorsement of a bill by the 50-50 Senate, and comes in the wake of a spike of anti-Asian hate crimes over the last year. Sen. Josh Hawley (Mo.) was lone Republican to vote against the bill.

Details: The bill will train law enforcement to better identify anti-Asian racism and appoint an official in the Justice Department to review and expedite COVID-19-related hate crime reports, among other measures.

  • After opposition from Republicans, an amendment replaced wording related to "COVID-19 hate crimes" with "hate crimes," while specifically mentioning the Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) community.
  • Another Republican-backed amendment will provide grants to state and local governments to help with hate crime reporting.

What's next: The legislation is likely to pass in the House and head to Biden's desk for a signature.

Go deeper:

Go deeper

Pew: Over 80% of Asian adults say violence against them is increasing

Photo: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

More than 80% of Asian adults say that violence against them is increasing, according to a new Pew Research Center survey.

The big picture: The survey, conducted April 5-11, comes after the recent shootings in Atlanta in which eight people, including six Asian women were killed, as well as a yearlong spike in hate incidents against the Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) community.

Updated 3 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Giuliani associate Lev Parnas convicted of campaign finance crimes

Lev Parnas, a former associate of then-President Donald Trump’s personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani. Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Florida businessman Lev Parnas was convicted Friday on charges of conspiracy to make foreign contributions to political campaigns, according to multiple outlets.

Why it matters: Prosecutors said Parnas, then an associate of former President Donald Trump's personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani, funneled over $150,000 from a Russian businessman into U.S. campaigns as part of an effort to land licenses in the U.S.'s legal cannabis industry.

Supreme Court agrees to hear challenges to Texas abortion law

Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images

The Supreme Court on Friday agreed to hear two cases challenging Texas' abortion law, which bans the procedure as soon as six weeks into pregnancy, but left the law in place in the meantime.

Why it matters: The court is moving extraordinarily fast on the Texas cases, compressing into just a few days a process that normally takes months. And that schedule means the court will take up Texas' ban a month before it hears another major abortion case — a challenge to Mississippi's own 2018 ban on abortions after 15 weeks.