Thursday, February 28, 2013

Violence Against Women Act: House Passes Broader Senate Bill, Sends To Obama To Become Law

Violence Against Women Act 
 House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) speaks at a Jan. 2013 press conference on the Violence Against Women Act. (Win McNamee/Getty Images)
Source: Huffington Post
 WASHINGTON -- The Violence Against Women Act is finally heading to the president's desk this week after a dragged out political fight over expanding protections to Native American, LGBT and immigrant victims of abuse.

The House voted 286 to 138 on Thursday to pass the bipartisan Senate version of VAWA.
The vote came just after the House rejected its own GOP bill, 166 to 257, which drew loud cheers in the chamber. Sixty Republicans voted against the GOP bill.

Throughout the debate, House Republicans maintained that their bill would have covered all women. But the reality is that it didn't go as far as the bipartisan Senate bill. The House bill stripped out protections for LGBT victims of abuse, it didn't give tribal courts new authority in certain domestic violence cases and it added new eligibility restrictions for U Visas for abused immigrant women. The House bill also entirely left out two separate measures attached to the Senate bill: the SAFER Act, which helps law enforcement address a backlog in untested rape kits, and the Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act, which targets human trafficking.

The House Republican bill appeared doomed before it hit the floor. It had zero support from Democrats, and a growing number of Republicans were saying they couldn't support it. Seventeen House Republicans sent a letter to House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) and House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) last month urging passage of a bipartisan bill. Ahead of Thursday's vote, Rep. Shelley Moore Capito (R-W. Va.) said she planned to vote for the Senate bill, as did Rep. Tom Cole (R-Okla.), a leading voice on tribal issues.
The GOP bill "does not adequately recognize sovereignty" and fails to give tribal courts "the tools they need to combat violence against women," Cole said in a statement, read aloud on the floor by a Democratic colleague.
 Act: House Passes Broader Senate Bill, Sends To Obama To Become Law
Enhanced by Zemanta

No comments:

Post a Comment