Since the Violence Against Women Act expired almost two years ago, South Carolina’s 4th District Congressman Trey Gowdy has pled for its reinstatement. As a former prosecutor, he illustrated his House floor speeches with actual, tragic cases of women who suffered at the violent hands of some men.
But then the House version of this bill was rejected and replaced with a Senate version that Gowdy says was injected with language to divide the parties instead of create compromise. So he voted against the act, which passed the House 286-138.
Here are some excerpts of his interview with South Carolina Radio Network’s Ashley Byrd.
AUDIO: Gowdy explains what change prompted his “no” vote (2:35)
Gowdy rejects the idea that his party is engage in a “war on women,” so how does he think women perceive his vote?
AUDIO: Gowdy and the “war on women” (2:49)
The Senate version added a distinction for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered victims to the bill. That, in addition to giving legal sovereignty to Native American tribes despite Supreme Court rulings, caused Republican backlash.
AUDIO: Gowdy on why protections became deal breakers (5:25)
The new Violence Against Women Act funds $660 million a year for five years for programs to help prosecute domestic violence cases and to aid victims.