Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Which Democrats Just Voted Against Working to Combat Rape in the Military?

Today, the Senate continued voting on amendments to the FY 2016 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA).

Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) was able to get another vote on her Military Justice Improvement Act, a bill to take prosecution of rape and other serious crimes outside of the chain of command in the military and into the hands of trained prosecutors.

Here is Senator Gillibrand talking on the floor about why the MJIA is so badly needed:
“Over the last few years, Congress has forced the military to make incremental changes to address the crisis of sexual assault and after two decades of complete failure, and lip service to ‘zero tolerance’ – the military now says, essentially, ‘Trust us this time, we got it’
“They spin the data, hoping nobody will dig below the surface of their top lines because when you do, you find that:
“The assault rate is exactly where it was in 2010.
“We still see an average of 52 new cases every single day, and three out of four service-member survivors still don’t think it’s worth the risk of coming forward to report the crimes committed against them.
“One in seven victims was assaulted by someone in their chain of command.
“In 60 percent of cases, a supervisor or unit leader is responsible for sexual harassment or gender discrimination.
“It’s no surprise then, that one in three survivors believe that reporting would hurt their career.
“For those who do report, they are more likely than not to experience retaliation.
“Despite a much-touted reform that made retaliation a crime, the DoD made zero progress on improving the 62 percent retaliation rate that we had in 2012.
“According to a Human Rights Watch report, the DoD cannot provide a single example of serious disciplinary action taken against those who retaliate.
“A sexual assault survivor is 12 times more likely to suffer retaliation than see their offender get convicted for a sex offense.
“And in my close review of 107 cases from the four largest military bases in the country, one for each service, I found that nearly half of those who did move forward and report, ended up dropping out.
“Survivors still have little faith in the system. Under any metric, the system remains plagued with distrust, and does not provide the fair and just process that survivors deserve.
“Simply put, the military has not held up to the standard posed by General Dempsey one year ago, when he said the Pentagon was on the clock.
“I urge my colleagues to hold the military to that higher standard. Let’s put these decisions into the hands of trained, seasoned prosecutors.
“Enough is enough with the spin, with the excuses, and with the promises. We must do the right thing and act.
It failed 50 to 49--achieving a majority but not enough votes to pass the 60-vote threshold for amendments. 

36 members of the Democratic caucus and 14 members of the Republican caucus voted for it. 10 members of the Democratic caucus and 39 members of the Republican caucus voted against it.

Here are the 10 members of the Democratic caucus who voted against working to curb the rape epidemic in the military:

Tom Carper (D-DE)
Tim Kaine (D-VA)
Angus King (I-ME)
Joe Manchin (D-WV)
Claire McCaskill (D-MO)
Bill Nelson (D-FL)
Jack Reed (D-RI)
Jon Tester (D-MT)
Mark Warner (D-VA)
Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI)

No comments:

Post a Comment