America

Two Senators Put Hold On Land Sale For National Women's History Museum In D.C.

Jim DeMint

Sen. Jim DeMint, (R-SC), with his colleague, Sen. Tom Coburn (R-OK), put a hold on S. 2129. Jacquelyn Martin/AP Photo hide caption

itoggle caption Jacquelyn Martin/AP Photo

If passed, S. 2129, the "National Women's History Museum Act of 2009," would "authorize the Administrator of General Services to convey a parcel of real property in the District of Columbia to provide for the establishment of a National Women's History Museum."

The National Women's History Museum hopes to have a permanent home in Washington, just a block from the National Mall. If all goes according to plan, it would apply to be a Smithsonian Affiliate.

Today, USA Today reports Sens. Tom Coburn (R-OK) and Jim DeMint (R-SC) have placed a "hold" on the bill.

The senators say their concerns are financial: Though the museum would pay fair market value for the land, the group has raised little money. And they said the new institution would duplicate more than 100 similar museums — some of which already get taxpayer subsidies.

Abortion politics are also in play: The senators' action came two days after the Concerned Women for America, a conservative group, wrote DeMint asking for a hold. The group's CEO, Penny Nance, wrote in July that the museum would "focus on abortion rights without featuring any of the many contributions of the pro-life movement in America."

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