These days there is so much partisan bickering in the halls of Congress that it is refreshing to hear about instances where important legislation is passed with broad bipartisan support, like with the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act.
While it took a few attempts and a few months extra effort in the House of Representatives, yesterday the Violence Against Women Act was finally reauthorized and will again become the law of the land. With over 286 representatives from both sides of the aisle casting their “yea” to support the Senate version of VAWA, the vote to reauthorize the bill—and expand the protections for Native Americans, immigrants, and LGBT members across the country—is truly bipartisan. VAWA ‘s reauthorization ensures that we will continue improving our nation’s response to domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking, regardless of who needs protection.
Of special note, I would like to thank the Republican House members who voted against an earlier version of VAWA in the House and pushed Republican leadership for the stronger Senate version that ultimately passed. Original versions of the house bill did NOT include the new protections for Native Americans, immigrants, and LGBT victims of violence, and 33 Republicans voted against the stripped down version of VAWA and then went on to vote in support of the more inclusive Senate version. These 33 members of Congress showed courage standing up to their party’s leadership and demanding a strong VAWA because no case of intimate partner violence in our country is acceptable.
Here is the list of the 33 Republican members of Congress who voted against the watered down version of VAWA and then voted for the final inclusive version of VAWA that passed yesterday. If you see your member listed here make sure to give their office a call and thank them for supporting VAWA!
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