Republican Leaders Defeat McCollum Bill with Blatant Phony Arguments
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Minutes Before Vote, Republican Leadership Circulated Misinformation Bill Contained Abortion
Washington, DC - Congresswoman Betty McCollum (MN-04) issued the following statement, regarding the House of Representatives' failure to pass the International Protecting Girls by Preventing Child Marriage Act (S. 987).
Shortly before the vote, House Republican leadership encouraged its members to vote against the legislation. In an email alert, Republicans stated that S. 987 contained abortion provisions, which is completely untrue. The email also said that this legislation provided insufficient financial oversight. This statement is false as well.
There were Republicans who understood the importance of S. 987. They supported this legislation and fought to protect the rights of young girls.
Republicans who voted for S. 987 include: Anders Crenshaw (FL), Mike Castle (DE), Charlie Dent (PA), Vernon Ehlers (MI), Rodney Frelinghuysen (NJ), Tom Latham (IA), Steven LaTourette (OH), Erik Paulsen (MN), Aaron Shock (IL), Jim Sensenbrenner (WI), Michael Simpson (ID), and Patrick Tiberi (OH).
Congresswoman McCollum issued the following statement.
"Child marriage is a global challenge that knows no politics. Every day, it brutally destroys millions of young girls' lives. If nothing is done, this barbaric practice will force millions more girls into a life of slavery, sex abuse, domestic violence, and servitude.
"Senate Democrats and Republicans didn't play partisan politics in this vote; they unanimously recognized that the United States can and should become a leader in the fight against child marriage. Had this legislation contained abortion provisions or authorized new spending, it never would have unanimously passed the Senate.
"I thank the 229 Democrats who voted for this bill as well as the 12 Republicans. I am especially grateful for Senators Durbin, Brownback, Kerry, Lugar, and Snowe who worked to get this bipartisan agreement passed.
"The International Protecting Girls by Preventing Child Marriage Act failed last night not because of the issue, but because a handful of Republicans chose partisan politics over the basic human rights of young girls. I am truly disappointed in this result, but I'm not giving up on these children."
Congresswoman Betty McCollum serves on the House Appropriations and Budget Committees.