In Last Salvo on War On Women for 2012 Legislative Session, Congress Refuses to Renew VAWA

The House Republicans finish off the lame duck session with one last thumbing of the nose at women.

Photo: Amnesty International.

Throughout the 2012 legislative session Congress—most often the Republican-dominated House members—have put women through the wringer when it came to federal bills. Routine anti-poverty measures that routinely assist women have been gutted, so called “entitlements” that disproportionately affect women have been threatened, and federal abortion rights restrictions have been repeatedly proposed in order to offer mostly theatrical endeavors that provide red meat to the anti-choice activists filling the lawmakers’ coffers.

Now, as the curtain closes on the lame duck session, House Republicans have dropped all pretense that this was about anything other than an agenda to punish women simply for being women. After eight years, the Violence Against Women Act is no longer in effect, because Republicans are concerned that it could help too many of the “wrong” kind of women.

Via Maddowblog:

Back in April, the Senate approved VAWA reauthorization fairly easily, with a 68 to 31 vote. The bill was co-written by a liberal Democrat (Vermont’s Pat Leahy) and a conservative Republican (Idaho’s Mike Crapo), and seemed on track to be reauthorized without much of a fuss, just as it was in 2000 and 2005.

But House Republicans insisted the bill is too supportive of immigrants, the LGBT community, and Native Americans — and they’d rather let the law expire than approve a slightly expanded proposal. Vice President Biden, who helped write the original law, tried to persuade House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) to keep the law alive, but the efforts didn’t go anywhere.

As Washington Senator Patty Murphy expressed in a press release, the bill would have been expanded to cover an additional 30 million women. But assisting more women in need is apparently a flaw, not an asset, with the House GOP. Among other changes, allowing undocumented women the ability to report abuse without worrying about deportation and expanding assistance to LGBT, or Native Americans seems to be a deal breaker with the Republicans.

The Republican party has a strange disconnect when it comes to “protecting” women. On the one hand they create an abundance of unnecessary anti-choice legislation allegedly designed to “protect” women from boogeymen doctors and from themselves. But when presented with real cases of women who have been victimized and need help and resources, they simply turn away.