THE DAILY WHIP: THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 28, 2013

House Meets At: First Vote Predicted: Last Vote Predicted:

9:00 a.m.: Legislative Business

Five “One Minutes” per side

11:00 – 11:30 a.m. 11:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

S. 47 – The Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013 (Sen. Leahy – Judiciary) (One Hour of Debate). Since 1994, the Violence Against Women Act has given domestic violence service providers, law enforcement, and federal, state and local government the tools necessary to assist and help protect countless victims of sexual assault, domestic violence and stalking.

Earlier this month, the Senate passed S. 47 by a margin of 78-22 with strong bipartisan support from every Democratic Senator and a majority of Senate Republicans including all of the Senate GOP women. This measure addresses a number of concerns for LGBT, Native American and immigrant victims of sexual assault and domestic violence. The measure includes language to ensure the availability of services to all victims of domestic and dating violence, no matter their sexual orientation or gender identity. The measure also provides authority to Native American tribes to prosecute non-Indian perpetrators for a narrow set of crimes related to domestic, dating violence and violations of protecting orders. The Senate measure also adds stalking to the list of crimes for which victims can receive protection through the U-Visa program. Finally, the Senate measure also includes authorizations for programs preventing human trafficking, sexual assault on college campuses, as well as additional resources to address rape kit backlogs. Members are urged to VOTE YES on S. 47 if the substitute amendment fails.

The Rule makes in order 1 amendment in the nature of a substitute, debatable for 20 minutes, equally divided between the offeror and an opponent.

Amendment in the Nature of a Substitute. Removes all references to “gender identity” and “sexual orientation” ignoring evidence that domestic and sexual violence affects LGBT victims at equal or greater levels than the rest of the population.  Rather than give tribes the authority they need to protect Indian women, this substitute limits tribes to charging an abuser with misdemeanors punishable by no more than one year in prison, even if the abuser has committed rape, a vicious assault, or another serious violent crime.  In addition, the amendment omits important protections for immigrant victims, does not provide critical protections for rape victims, human trafficking victims, students on campuses, or stalking victims.  It is a significantly weaker version of VAWA and once again we have Republicans choosing partisanship over compromise. Adoption of the substitute would mean that the House will not get a vote on the underlying senate-passed bill. Members are urged to VOTE NO.

Bill Text for S. 47:
PDF Version

Background for S. 47:
CRS Report - The Violence Against Women Act: Overview, Legislation, and Federal Funding

 
The Daily Quote

“A majority of Americans believe the $85 billion in automatic budget cuts scheduled to begin on Friday will hurt the economy, with Republicans most certain of the coming damage, according to a poll Thursday. Fifty-seven percent of Americans think sequestration will harm the national economy…. By a 43 percent to 40 percent margin, the GOP does prefer delaying the cuts to letting them happen.”

-     Politico, 2/28/13