It boils down to an unwillingness to expand the act to include women in tribal jurisdictions, gays, and undocumented residents. as Sahil Kapur explains.
“The House Republican leadership’s failure to take up and pass the Senate’s bipartisan and inclusive VAWA bill is inexcusable,” Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA), a Democratic leadership member, told TPM. “This is a bill that passed with 68 votes in the Senate and that extends the bill’s protections to 30 million more women. But this seems to be how House Republican leadership operates. No matter how broad the bipartisan support, no matter who gets hurt in the process, the politics of the right wing of their party always comes first.”
A Republican source familiar with failed last-minute negotiations to save the measure between Vice President Joe Biden and House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) disputed that view. The source blamed Senate Democrats for making a resolution impossible by “constantly shifting the goalposts” and adopting a “my way or the highway approach.”
…The 112th Congress ended Wednesday, and the Violence Against Women Act perished with it. The new Congress now has to start all over. A spokesperson said [Senator Patrick] Leahy was disappointed by the failure of VAWA re-authorization and looks forward to soon reintroducing an “inclusive, bipartisan bill covering vulnerable victims.”