Law | National | Politics

Tribal provisions of Violence Against Women Act survive fight

UPDATE 11:57am: The House voted 286-138 to pass the Senate version of the Violence Against Women Act. Prior to that vote, the House voted 166-257 to reject the Republican version of the bill.

After months of opposition from Republicans, it looks like the Violence Against Women Act will finally clear Congress this week.

VAWA has enjoyed bipartisan support since it was first enacted in 1994. But the bill became a hot issue during the 112th Congress when Democrats included provisions to protect American Indian and Alaska Native women, as well as immigrants and gay and lesbian victims.

Despite the controversy, the Senate easily passed the measure last year. Republicans in the House, however, insisted on a different version that didn't recognize tribal jurisdiction over non-Indians, who are responsible for most of the violent crimes against Native women.

The 2012 election cycle soon became a referendum on women's issues, with voters turning against Republican politicians who expressed questionable views on rape and other sensitive topics. That made it seem like VAWA would enjoy stronger support in the 113th Congress.

Indeed, the Senate made S.47 one of its first orders of business. The tribal provisions were modified slightly to address concerns, although that didn't stop 22 Republicans from voting against VAWA earlier this month.

Trouble soon surfaced in the House, as Republican leaders against insisted on their own version. But after a House Rules Committee hearing on Tuesday, the GOP changed course and agreed to a process in which the Senate's version will receive a final vote.

Passage is expected between 11am and 12pm, according to the House majority leader's schedule.

Get the Story:
House GOP leaders set to hand Senate Dems victory on VAWA (The Hill 2/27)
House Sets Up Final Votes On Domestic Violence Bill (Roll Call 2/27)
House to vote on Violence Against Women Act measures (The Washington Post 2/28)
House Republicans Clear Path for Renewal of Violence Against Women Act (The New York Times 2/28)
Congress set to approve bill renewing Violence Against Women Act (AP 2/28)

Join the Conversation
Related Stories:
House set to vote on VAWA with tribal jurisdiction provisions (2/27)
Louise Erdrich: Native women left at mercy of their predators (2/27)
Rep. Cole plans to introduce tribal amendment to VAWA bill (2/26)
MPR: Debating tribal jurisdiction provisions in VAWA update (2/26)
Opinion: Republicans sacrifice protections for Indian women (2/26)
Opinion: Flawed tribal jurisdiction provisions in House VAWA (2/26)
House to consider VAWA with different jurisdiction provisions (2/25)
NCAI denounces Sen. Grassley for 'fear mongering' on tribes (2/25)
Editorial: Congress must renew Violence Against Women Act (2/25)
Top GOP lawmaker doesn't think non-Indians will get fair trial (2/22)
GOP lawmakers introduce Violence Against Indian Women Act (2/21)
Tribal jurisdiction provisions of VAWA face questions in House (2/20)
Editorial: Close tribal jurisdiction loophole with VAWA update (2/19)
Rep. Tom Cole defends tribal jurisdiction provisions in VAWA (2/18)
Editorial: Congress must renew Violence Against Women Act (2/18)
NCAI President Keel calls on Congress to protect Indian women (2/15)
PRI: Professor Sarah Deer discusses tribal jurisdiction in VAWA (2/15)
Republican blames VAWA vote on tribal jurisdiction provisions (2/14)
Opinion: Tribal jurisdiction provision violates U.S. Constitution (2/14)
Tribes hail passage of VAWA with tribal jurisdiction provision (2/13)
Senate keeps tribal jurisdiction provisions in VAWA measure (2/12)
Senate set for vote on VAWA with tribal jurisdiction provisions (2/11)
Editorial: Reauthorize VAWA with tribal jurisdiction provisions (2/11)
Column: Failing to respond to violence against Native women (2/11)
Senate rejects alternative to VAWA without tribal jurisdiction (2/8)
Senate set to vote on VAWA with tribal jurisdiction provision (2/7)
White House backs tribal jurisdiction provisions in VAWA bill (2/5)
Frontline: Closing a loophole in VAWA to help Native women (2/5)
Ryan Dreveskracht: Tribal provisions of VAWA up for debate (2/5)
Opinion: The Violence Against Women Act is on life support (01/28)
Matt Remle: Violence against women, violence against earth (1/25)
Haley Elkins: Media goes silent on the failure to pass VAWA (1/24)
NCAI calls on Congress to pass Violence Against Women Act (01/24)