Opinion: Republican VAWA amendment dangerous for tribes

"Senate amendments to the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act (“VAWA”) should be completed today. According to Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), “Republicans are working with Democrats on an agreement to consider just a few amendments to the bill, and a short time agreement on those amendments.”

From the very beginning, Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) had opposed the VAWA, even requesting that Senate Judiciary Republicans unanimously vote against it because of what he believes are “problematic provisions of the committee bill [that] would give tribal courts authority to arrest, try and imprison any American” – provisions that he believes are “probably unconstitutional.” Now, Senator Grassley has teamed up with Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX) to offer “a substitute that would address GOP concerns with the bill.” Although the full details of Grassley and Hutchinson’s changes have yet to be released, it is likely that they will map their previously stated opposition to providing tribal jurisdiction over non-Indians.

These “concerns” are unfounded and, quite frankly, offending."

Get the Story:
Ryan Dreveskracht: The Grassley-Hutchinson VAWA Amendment is an Affront to Tribal Sovereignty (Galanda Broadman 4/26)

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