American Values president Gary Bauer demanded Republicans oppose the re-authorization of the Violence Against Women Act, writing in Human Events today that the bill is a “trap.” Senate Judiciary Committee Republicans all voted against re-authorization and Bauer insisted that they oppose the legislation because of “provisions allowing abused illegal immigrants to claim temporary visas and programs for same-sex couples.” As Legal Momentum’s Lynn Hecht Schafran notes, protections for immigrants and women in same-sex relationships have “always been true about the bill but required clarification.”
Bauer, who regularly rails against the “war on religion,” the “war on Christmas” and the “social, political and cultural war in our country,” also expressed his anger that progressives are using the phrase “war” as part of “painting conservatives as domestic policy war mongers,” and of course didn’t miss an opportunity to criticize Sandra Fluke:
Whether it’s the “war on science” or the “war on labor unions,” the left never tires of painting conservatives as domestic policy war mongers. Now liberals are revisiting another fictitious conservative war, against women.
At the Women in the World Summit in New York last week, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton blasted tyrants across the globe. “They want to control how we dress, they want to control how we act, they even want to control the decisions we make about our own health and bodies,” Clinton said.
Then she compared Burma’s opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi to Sandra Fluke. “Women and girls…throughout the world,” she said, “are assuming the risks that come with sticking your neck out, whether you are a democracy activist in Burma or a Georgetown law student in the United States.”
It was absurd for America’s top diplomat to compare a chief target of one of the world’s most authoritarian regimes to the law student/abortion activist.
Obama cited Fluke’s “bravery” when he spoke about her. But a more apt word is “shamelessness.”
Speaking of shameless, while Clinton has made advancing women’s rights a major rhetorical theme of her time at State, the Obama administration has ignored and even supported egregious violations against women.
Whining about the “war on women” in a Politico op-ed last week, former Democratic Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm wrote, “Republican obsession with Planned Parenthood alone has become a form of legislative sexual McCarthyism.”
In case there was any doubt about the centrality of the “war on women” theme to the Democratic campaign, Senate Democrats are pushing to extend the Violence Against Women Act, with a vote by the end of March.
Most Republicans support the law, but it’s a trap. The legislation includes not only laudable programs like grants to battered women’s shelters but also provisions allowing abused illegal immigrants to claim temporary visas and programs for same-sex couples.
Allusions to the Republican “war on women” will continue as a major Democratic campaign theme. But they’re just Democrats’ way of diverting voters’ attention from their own failures and injustices toward women.
Update: Concerned Women for America, a consistent opponent of the Violence Against Women Act, in an email to members today claimed that the law “destroys the family”:
VAWA, in its current form, is a boondoggle for feminist groups. It has morphed into a series of rigid and ineffective law enforcement programs that continue to spend approximately $455 million each year. Instead of helping women and children, this legislation creates a large bureaucracy and destroys the family by obscuring real violence in order to promote the feminist agenda.
Finally, this bill creates a new series of expensive and unnecessary programs that further complicate the process of giving aid to these women and push a feminist agenda (such as one $15 million program that attempts to “re-educate” school children into domestic violence ideology [Section 302]).
VAWA harms women by diluting assistance to real victims and by tearing the family apart. Please call your senators today at 202-224-3121, and urge them to oppose VAWA.