Eighteen years ago, Democratic majorities in the House and Senate passed the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) and helped ensure that no victim of domestic violence has to suffer in silence. In the years since, domestic violence has decreased by more than 50%. Twice, in the intervening years, we have come together in a bipartisan way to reauthorize and strengthen this law. This year, our colleagues in the Senate acted similarly -- passing a strong bill with a bipartisan vote of 68-31 -- including the support of every single woman in the Senate.
In sharp contrast, House Republicans continue to support a controversial bill that will weaken the protections we give to those who suffer domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking. This legislation fails vulnerable people including: members of the LGBT community, Native American women, and immigrant victims. There should be no special exceptions to this law; all people deserve to be protected from domestic violence. Congress must work to pass this critical legislation now.