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Senate Vote: 19     Vote Date: Feb 12th, 2013

Issue:  S. 47 As Amended; A bill to reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act of 1994.

Result:  Passed 78 to 22. Became Public Law 113-4 (signed by the president 3-7-13). GOP and Democrat selected vote.

Bill Summary: When it became public law, S. 47 revived and expanded the Violence Against Women Act of 1994 (VAWA), which had lapsed in 2011.

According to Wikipedia: “The [2013] Act provides $1.6 billion toward investigation and prosecution of violent crimes against women, imposes automatic and mandatory restitution on those convicted, and allows civil redress in cases prosecutors chose to leave un-prosecuted. The Act also establishes the Office on Violence Against Women within the Department of Justice.”

In addition, VAWA reauthorized numerous grants for training of those dealing at the community level with all stages of the problem and for services for the victims.

Analysis  The Violence Against Women Act is a good example of a federal power grab driven by revolutionary pressure from below. Under the guise of humanitarian concern over a very real problem — mistreatment of women — revolutionaries have long sought to advance the ambitions of a power hungry elite that seeks to dominate every aspect of human society. As with numerous other organized campaigns, they demand that the federal government assume dangerous new authority to solve a problem.

The original 1994 Act was drafted by the office of then-Senator Joe Biden and signed into law by President Bill Clinton. But support for the act had been developed by organized pressure from below. The revolutionary objectives of the organized movement supporting VAWA can be seen clearly in a much earlier initiative — the UN’s Convention on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW).

CEDAW example

The UN General Assembly adopted CEDAW in 1979. President Jimmy Carter signed the treaty for the United States and submitted it to the Senate for consideration. However, the U.S. has never ratified CEDAW. In the intervening years, revolutionary and internationalist pressures have coerced numerous national governments into signing the convention, but the signatories have often insisted on qualifying their approvals with serious reservations of authority and exceptions.

A 1979 U.S. State Department memorandum analyzing CEDAW noted that several provisions would “reach into the areas that are not regulated by the federal government.” For example, Article Two would require Congress to pass “appropriate corrective legislation” to regulate “membership in private clubs and organizations”; Article Five requires signatory nations “to modify the social and cultural patterns of conduct of men and women” and to monitor the content of “family education.” And Article Ten demands that the federal government take responsibility for the “elimination of any stereotyped concept of the roles in men and women at all levels and in all forms of education.”

Revolutionaries are forced to advance most of their objectives in stages (as with nationalizing health care and education). Years may elapse before they have the right opportunity and support to gain national attention and go to the next level.   That has certainly been the case with U.S. ratification of CEDAW.

In 2010, for example, activists organized to bring renewed pressure on the U.S. Senate to ratify the treaty. On November 18, a Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Human Rights and the Law responded by holding hearings. Most of the testimony was pro-CEDAW and outside the hearing room a long line of women formed up wearing pink “Ratify CEDAW” stickers. Apparently, the Senators were not sufficiently impressed and soon turned to other matters.

Not surprisingly, President Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry have both indicated their support for CEDAW. However, at the moment neither seems inclined to push ratification to the forefront of their agendas.

Back to VAWA

In a 2000 case, the U.S. Supreme Court narrowly ruled against one of the provisions in the 1994 Violence Against Women Act as an intrusion on states rights (allowing victims the right to sue their attackers in federal court). However, major parts of the measure are clearly unconstitutional federal overreach into state matters. Federal dominance is often achieved through the strings attached to unconstitutional federal grants to the states.

More significantly, the revolutionary supporters of VAWA clearly regard the federal meddling as merely a steppingstone toward providing the federal government with the power and opportunity to restructure society to their liking.

Following typical revolutionary strategy, the 2000 and 2005 reauthorizations of the Violence Against Women Act have expanded its application. Originally VAWA focused on domestic violence and sexual assault. However, the reauthorized acts expanded the focus to include dating violence and stalking.

The 2013 reauthorization further expands federal “protections” to include “underserved populations” — in particular, gays, lesbians, transgender individuals, Native Americans and even “undocumented” immigrants who, as victims of violent crimes, may qualify for temporary visas (U-visas).

The Senate bill was also expanded to include the reauthorization of the Trafficking Victims Protection Act. Broadening the scope of VAWA to include some legitimate federal concerns helped to undermine political opposition to the Act.

Although the House rejected the Senate version the year before, in 2013 the House overwhelmingly approved the 2013 Senate version without amendment. 87 Republicans sided with 199 Democrats to pass the measure. No House Democrat voted in opposition, and, although the majority of House Republicans opposed VAWA, 87 of their colleagues helped the Democrats carry the day.

In the Senate, Democrats voted 53 to 0 in support of the measure (more than enough for passage). All opposition came from the GOP (22 senators voting nay), however 23 GOP senators gave the measure bipartisan support.

The revolutionary agenda is always advanced in pieces so that the public does not become aware of its destination. And it uses appealing sophistry to justify ignoring the Constitution, historical experience, and religion-based morality.

The techniques employed in collectivist strategy are not new. Nineteenth-century French statesman Frederic Bastiat wrote that governments seek to increase their power by “creating the poison and the antidote in the same laboratory” — that is, by using government resources to exacerbate problems which can then be used to justify statist “solutions.”

In his 1969 book, Journey into Darkness, John Douglas, legendary FBI profiler and expert on the criminal personality, concluded:

“Unfortunately, no matter what we do with our criminal justice system, the only thing that is going to cut down appreciably on crimes of violence and depravity is to stop manufacturing as many criminals…. [T]he real struggle must be where it has always been: in the home.”

And the home has been the target of Establishment Insiders and the revolutionary agenda for decades. So, too, have been the religious and moral supports for a free and productive society.

We have assigned (good vote) to the Nays and (bad vote) to the Yeas. (P = voted present; ? = not voting; blank = not listed on roll call.)