After more than a year of contorting and finagling their way out of renewing the Violence Against Women Act, House leadership allowed a vote on the Senate’s all-inclusive version of the bill today and it passed 286 to 138.
WASHINGTON — The GOP-controlled House on Thursday passed a renewal of the Violence Against Women Act that expands federal protections to gays, lesbians and transgender people, Native Americans and immigrants.
The vote was 286-138, with 87 Republicans joining 199 Democrats to pass the bill. The measure now heads to President Obama, who has said he will sign the legislation.
The version of the bill House leadership allowed to come to a vote today is essentially the same version that was passed by the Senate during the Spring of 2012. It includes jurisdictional rights for Native American tribes and protections for immigrants and members of the LGBT community.
What this means is Republicans in the House wasted an entire year, and garnered the resulting brand press, for nothing. They could have done this prior to last summer when former presidential candidate Mitt Romney’s poll numbers began to dip into landslide territory.
If John Boehner and Eric Cantor simply allow bills to be voted on, they will pass with Democratic support.