Today, House Republican Conference Vice Chair Lynn Jenkins supported S.47 the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act, which passed the U.S. House of Representatives with a bipartisan vote of 286-138. Congresswoman Jenkins released the following statement after the vote:
"I have always been a strong supporter of the federal government's role in protecting our most vulnerable, because I believe the primary function of government is to protect its citizens. I have heard from many constituents on this issue, and met with the Prairie Band Potawatomi Tribal Council about the issues specific to American Indians. Although it is not perfect, today I supported the Violence Against Women Act. I am not, however, proud of how long it took to reauthorize this bill.
"We could have done this last year, but instead of working together, the women this bill seeks to protect were used as a wedge for partisan, election-year politics. The simple fact is both parties are to blame for the delay. Democrats wanted a hammer to beat over the heads of Republicans and far too many misguided Republicans provided them with that hammer. This is exactly why hardworking Americans are fed up with Congress. The level of political rancor in Washington has caused the legislative process to break down, and we can no longer do even the simplest of things.
"When it comes to the importance of protecting women, Republicans and Democrats actually agree. In the coming weeks, there will be more divisive debates. Spirited debate is what our system of government is all about, but so is finding responsible solutions to address our nation's greatest challenges. As we move forward with the enormous budgetary challenges we face, I hope we can dispose of the poll-tested, political-based speeches and get back to solving problems."