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Sinema, Fitzpatrick call for long-term extension of Violence Against Women Act
Rep. Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.) and Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick (R-Pa.) are calling on House leadership to work swiftly to pass a long-term reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA).
The House is expected to pass a short-term extension of the current VAWA bill next week, which would extend that law to Dec. 7, But the two lawmakers say that's not enough.
"While we appreciate the short-term extension, we ask that a bipartisan, long-term reauthorization of VAWA move forward as quickly as possible to provide greater certainty and to ensure these protections and resources do not lapse," they wrote in a letter to House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) and Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.)
Sinema and Fitzpatrick said significant progress has been made since VAWA was first passed in 1994, but also want to see additional reforms.
"Congress reauthorized and amended VAWA three times by broad bipartisan majorities. Most recently in February 2013, Congress worked across the aisle to successfully pass the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act into law," they wrote. "We call for a similar bipartisan effort now in support of a long-term reauthorization of this important law and the millions of lives it protects."
Sinema - who is running for the Senate in Arizona - highlighted her work on VAWA since she was first elected to the House in the statement. The Cook Political Report rates her race against Rep. Martha McSally (R-Ariz.) as a toss-up.
Fitzpatrick faces a competitive reelection race this fall. Cook rates his race as leaning Republican.