It’s strangely sectional, but I love it when the national media notice Washington people in Congress (for good things; it’s the worst when it’s for something awful). So I’m glad to see The Raw Story notice how ably Maria Cantwell handled the stupid arguments against the tribal portions of Violence Against Women Act (h/t).
Cantwell noted that Native American women experience domestic violence and sexual assault at a rate far above the national average.
“However, less than 50 percent of the domestic violence cases in Indian country are prosecuted because of a gap in our legal system,” she explained on the Senate floor. “This isn’t about politics. This isn’t about a debate on what is a good way to win votes somewhere in America. This is about the life or death of women who need a better system to help prosecute those who are committing serious crimes against them.”
Cantwell denied the tribal provisions would violate the constitutional rights of U.S. citizens. She noted the U.S. Department of Justice would partner with tribal courts and non-tribal Americans would have the ability to appeal their case to a federal court. The legislation also specifically prohibits tribal courts from violating Americans’ rights.