Earlier today (2/28/13) the House of Representatives passed, with broad bipartisan support, Senate bill 47, the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act. First, the House had to vote down the bad House substitute bill, which they did on a vote of 257 ayes to 166 nays before moving onto the original Senate bill.

The bipartisan nature of support for the Senate version of the bill, which includes important protections for immigrants that the House bill lacked, may be a good sign for any potential upcoming votes on immigration reform. That remains to be seen, but today we saw an important step forward in protecting all victims of violence.

VAWA is the law that provides protection and allows spouses of US citizens and Lawful Permanent Residents to self-petition themselves for a green card if they were victims of battery and/or cruelty at the hands of their citizen or resident spouses.