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Senate rejects alternative to VAWA without tribal jurisdiction

[YouTube: Cantwell Urges Swift Passage of Violence Against Women Act with Strong Tribal Provisions]
The Senate voted down an alternative to S.47, a bill to reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act, that didn't include tribal jurisdiction provisions.

S.Amdt.14 was sponsored by Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa). It would have required tribes to go to federal court to enforce protection orders for American Indian and Alaska Native women.

Democrats spoke out against the alternative on Thursday. "I am not going to treat Native American women as second-class citizens in the United States of America," said Sen. Maria Cantwell (D-Washington), the new chair woman of the Senate Indian Affairs Committee.

"Now I get that that might have been the cultural norm of the 1700s and the 1800s but it has no place in our history in 2013," Cantwell added. [Transcript of Remarks]

With all Democrats against it, the amendment lost by a 34-65 vote. Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), a former vice chairwoman of the committee, was one of the few Republicans who agreed to reject it.

Sen. John Barrasso (R-Wyoming), the current vice chair of the committee, voted for the amendment.

A final vote on S.47 is expected on Monday. The bill recognizes tribal jurisdiction over non-Indians who commit domestic violence offenses on reservations.

Get the Story:
Senate poised to renew Violence Against Women Act (AP 2/8)
Sen. Murray: Don’t throw native women under the bus (The Seattle Post-Intelligencer 2/7)

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