About Damn Time: Violence Against Women Act Now Cleared To Pass House Over Conservative Opposition

by
Owen Poindexter
The Violence Against Women Act, allowed to expire by the House last January, will get a vote soon, and may pass despite opposition on the far right.



Senator Patty Murray (D-Wash.) released this video to pressure John Boehner into acting on the Violence Against Women Act.

The Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), allowed to expire by the House last January, will get a vote soon, and may pass despite opposition on the far right. The VAWA generally gts renewed without controversy, but this time around, the Senate put  in new provisions to protect LGBT people and Native Americans. Conservative Republicans objected to the new treat gays like regular people stuff, and the VAWA expired.

In the two months that have passed since, Republicans have learned that people liked the Violence Against Women Act, and it's not exactly helping their status as a punching bag on women's issues. Here's the problem: they don't seem to have the votes to pass the more conservative VAWA. They DO have the votes for the Senate's version of the VAWA, because they will have the support of the entire Democratic caucus.

This is becoming the new normal for the House: the Democrats are now the united party, Republicans are divided between two groups we can roughly call "Tea Party" and "cares what other people think," and on bills with broad popular support, John Boehner is letting the Senate versions come up for a vote, unamended, and letting them pass with Democratic support and a smattering of Republicans.

The plan going forward for the House is to first bring up the more conservative Violence Against Women Act, watch it fail ("see, we tried") then put the Senate-passed VAWA up for a vote.

On a policy level, we get a new and improved VAWA, and politically we have to wonder if the Tea Party permanently fractured the Republican Party.

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