The issues the Violence Against Women Act addresses are not going away just because House Republicans are blocking the bipartisan Senate bill. Domestic violence shelters say they're at risk of losing funding if the bill doesn't pass soon, while the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy is still putting a strain on the ability of shelters and other domestic violence organizations in the northeast to help women get away from their abusers.
Huffington Post reports that, in the wake of the election, some Republicans may be softening. But to others, violence against women is irrelevant:
"I think you have to prioritize what's important right now," said Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.), pointing to the so-called "fiscal cliff."House Republican leadership, meanwhile, is still insisting on "compromise." (As in compromising the safety of the groups excluded from the House bill, I guess.)
"I haven't thought about that in 60 or 90 days," added Sen. Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.).
Since the election, Republicans have been running around trying to figure out what went wrong and how they can fix it without actually changing their policies. Well, if they want to be able to make a credible effort to even begin to pretend to make a vague gesture at giving lip service to the idea that they aren't engaged in a war on women or that they aren't just about demonizing and punishing Latinos, this would be a great way to start. The Senate version of the Violence Against Women Act drew support from 15 Republicans, so at least for some Republicans, passing it wouldn't be a big shift. And 22 Republicans voted against the terrible House bill, so it's not like that's overwhelmingly popular. If they can't move this bill, they're not even bothering to pretend.