RainbowFlagInDC2009RallyViaITSAllies

UPDATE at end

Today the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Senate-approved version of the Violence Against Women Act reauthorization bill, with a 286 to 138 vote, including 87 Republicans.

From The National Gay and Lesbian Task Force: (emphasis added throughout)

The measure, passed earlier this month by the Senate in a bipartisan 78-22 vote, includes explicit protections for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) survivors of domestic violence, enhanced protections for Native American and immigrant survivors, and campus safety provisions.

The House today rejected its own version of the bill that removed the inclusive provisions, opting instead to pass the Senate version.

The 1994 federal law provides funds to enhance investigation and prosecution of violent crimes such as domestic violence and sexual assault, and it bolsters victim services programs.

The Human Rights Campaign statement includes:

Today’s victory marks a rare occasion when Republicans and Democrats came together to ensure explicit protections in the federal code for “˜sexual orientation’ and “˜gender identity.’ It is also the first time that any federal non-discrimination provisions include the LGBT community.

President Obama has pledged to sign the bill which prohibits any program or activity funded by the bill from discriminating against a victim based on their actual or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity. It also explicitly includes LGBT victims in two key VAWA grant programs.

UPDATE

From Think Progress:

… All 138 votes against the bill were Republicans.

A watered down Republican version of the bill, which was offered as a substitute amendment, failed to garner enough votes to slow the process. It was struck down by a vote of 257 to 166. Sixty Republicans voted against their own party’s replacement measure.