CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Rep. Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.Va., said last week she hopes the federal Violence Against Women Act, which was allowed to lapse for the first time in nearly two decades by the last Congress, will be taken up by the new Congress.
Capito was part of a conference committee that was supposed to sort out differences between the House and Senate versions of the bill to reauthorize the law.
"Many members, myself included, are disappointed that we could not find enough common ground to pass a bill in both chambers last Congress. I hope and believe that this is not the end of VAWA debate and that we can come together to pass this important reauthorization," Capito said.
The Senate passed its version of the bill 68-31 in April, with Democrats joined by more than a dozen Republicans. The bill added new domestic violence protections for victims in three groups: American Indians, undocumented immigrants and LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) people.
The House approved its version of the bill in May, without the new provisions.
On July 30, Capito was chosen by the House Republican leadership to be a member of a bipartisan panel created to resolve differences between versions of the legislation passed by the Senate and the House.
At the time, Capito said the legislation remained critical to ending domestic violence.
"As the former chair of the Congressional Caucus on Women's Issues, I am committed to ending domestic violence. Supporting programs like the Violence Against Women Act is an essential step in achieving this goal," she said.