Wade Henderson, President and CEO of The Leadership Conference and the Joseph L. Rauh, Jr. Chair of Public Interest Law, published a new editorial inPolitic365 urging Republicans to support the Violence Against Women Act.
Prof. Henderson writes, "The campaign-minded Republicans who condemned Senate candidate Rep. Todd Akin’s statements about "legitimate rape” could deepen their impact by backing the routine reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA).
Just as Akin attempted to parse "rape” from "legitimate rape,” House Republicans are championing a VAWA bill that deems sexual violence against some women to be less legitimate than when it’s committed against other women. Their bill leaves out specific policies to address domestic violence and rape involving college students, immigrants, Native Americans, and LGBT people. The Senate bill that included these provisions passed with substantial bipartisan support and a large majority.
The political moves by Republican strategists regarding Akin’s candidacy happen to be in the best interests of women, but they shouldn’t stop there. With little time left before the election, the same figures should continue to lead and encourage House Republicans to pass the bipartisan and inclusive Senate Violence Against Women Act.
Not only will they protect women – but they might actually get a few more votes."