Today, Rep. Jim Renacci voted for the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act. Renacci was an original co-sponsor of the bill, which was aimed at both preventing future acts of domestic violence against women and protecting those who have already been victimized. The bill passed with bipartisan support.
While the House version of this five-year extension authorizes funding at the same level provided for in the Senate bill, it also strengthens specific provisions of the law that were not addressed in the Senate version. One notable example can be seen in the additional support the House bill provides for rape victims. Currently, only 40 percent of the funding in the DNA Analysis Backlog Elimination Act of 2000 is dedicated to testing rape kits. The reauthorization passed today in the House requires that 75 percent of the funding under that Act be dedicated to testing rape kits. The House version also increases maximum penalties under federal stalking laws by five years when vulnerable victims are involved.
"Sadly, domestic abuse remains entirely too common in America today. We must give law enforcement the tools to prosecute these crimes, and victims the resources to get the help they need. It is for these reasons that Congress must pass this legislation and get it to the President for his signature. I am proud to join so many men and women in this chamber today in speaking out against domestic violence by voting for this legislation, which gives a voice to those who are far too often left victimized and voiceless," Rep. Renacci said today.