Text of a Letter from the President to the House Majority Leader and the Senate Democratic Leader: Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) (9/27/00)
                              THE WHITE HOUSE

                       Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release                         September 27, 2000

                       TO THE HOUSE MAJORITY LEADER

Dear Mr. Leader:

I am writing to urge you to bring the reauthorization of the Violence
Against Women Act (VAWA) to the Senate floor this week.  This bill is a top
priority for my Administration.

An estimated 900,000 women suffer violence at the hands of an intimate
partner each year, demonstrating the urgent need for this legislation.
Since VAWA was enacted, the Departments of Justice and Health and Human
Services have awarded approxi-mately $1.6 billion in Federal grants to
support the work of prosecutors, law enforcement officials, the courts,
victim advocates, health care and social service professionals, and
intervention and prevention programs in order to combat violence against
women.  We must reauthorize these critical programs immediately.

As you know, yesterday, the House overwhelmingly passed VAWA
reauthorization by a vote of 415-3.  In the Senate, VAWA has similar
bipartisan support with over 70 cosponsors.  If Congress does not act this
week, however, VAWA?s authorization will expire on September 30, 2000.  The
Senate should not delay, and I urge you to pass a freestanding version of
the Biden-Hatch VAWA reauthorization bill this week.  The women and
families whose lives have been scarred by domestic violence deserve nothing
less than immediate action by the Congress.


                              WILLIAM J. CLINTON

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