The Senate voted overwhelmingly in favor of reauthorizing the Violence Against Women Act this morning and, for the first time in two decades, the revised version of the routinely-revised act will include special provisions for gays and lesbians, immigrants and Native American women.
The White House also supports the bill, claiming the government grants it provides to state and local authorities directly influenced a 67% decline in intimate partner violence between 1993 and 2010.
If reauthorized by the House, the new law would provide service to LGBT victims of domestic violence regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity, include the LGBT community in larger grant programs, and provide funding for programs that assist in providing LGBT outreach in underserved populations.
But support from the White House and a majority vote in the Senate doesn’t hold weight in the GOP-controlled House, which could likely act as a stronghold against passing the bill into law. A few House douchebags are still hung up on VAWA’s inclusion of the LGBT community, but a provision regarding Native American women and tribal court procedure is expected to take priority in House discussions.
Not all hope is lost! Seventeen House Republicans have already sent a letter to Speaker John Boehner, begging the GOP top dogs to follow the Senate’s precedent and swiftly approve the new bill.
Swift action in the House? We’ll believe it when we see it!