Today, Representative David Price (NC-04) voted against a Republican bill undermining core principles of the Violence against Women Act (VAWA), and admonished his Republican colleagues for picking a fight on critical non-partisan legislation protecting women against domestic abuse and sexual assault. The Republican bill eliminates longstanding protections for immigrant women and fails to incorporate protections for LGBT and Native Americans--provisions included in an alternate VAWA reauthorization that recently passed the Senate by a broadly bipartisan vote of 68-31.
"The Republican war on women appears to know no bounds. The House majority is actually picking a partisan fight over common-sense protections for women who are victims of domestic violence and sexual assault." Rep. Price said.
Congress passed VAWA in 1994. Since that time it has twice been reauthorized with bipartisan support in Congress. Each reauthorization has included improvements that strengthen VAWA's protection of women. The Obama Administration has released a Statement of Administration Policy threatening to veto the Republican bill.
How the House Republican VAWA Reauthorization Rolls Back Protections for Women
* The House Republican bill would remove existing protections for immigrant victims of domestic violence and sexual assault by allowing abusers to be notified when a victim files a VAWA self-petition for relief.
* The House Republican bill terminates the path to citizenship for "U" visa holders--victims of serious crimes such as torture, rape, and domestic violence--who are cooperating with law enforcement during the investigation or prosecution of crimes.
* The House Republican bill fails to include the bipartisan Senate bill's prohibition of discrimination against LGBT victims in VAWA grant programs.
* The House Republican bill fails to include the bipartisan Senate bill's clarification that tribal courts have full civil jurisdiction over non-Native Americans for assaults within tribal court jurisdictions covered by VAWA.