Shaheen Confronts Senate for Violence Against Women Director Delay

Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) reprimanded her colleagues in a floor speech Thursday for their two-month-long hold on the confirmation of Judge Susan Carbon as the Director of the Department of Justice’s Office of Violence Against Women (OVW). President Barack Obama first nominated Carbon to be director of the OVW in October 2009, according to the Boston Globe. The Senate Judiciary Committee unanimously voted for Carbon’s confirmation on December 3. She was eventually confirmed last Thursday. During her speech on the Senate floor, Shaheen said, “Every two minutes someone in this country is a victim of sexual violence. Every 52 seconds a woman is victimized by a spouse or partner. These crimes devastate victim’s lives. They shatter families…These Senators cloaked in anonymity were not punishing Attorney General Holder by blocking Susan Carbon’s confirmation. These Senators were punishing the victims of domestic and sexual violence in states across this country…the police officers who put their lives at risk every day when they enter homes plagued by domestic violence…[and] the community groups that are working to prevent domestic and sexual violence.” In addition to Carbon, 26 other Obama nominees were finally confirmed by the Senate last week, according to the New York Times. President Obama said in a statement, “In most cases, these holds have had nothing to do with the nominee’s qualifications or even political views…Instead, many holds were motivated by a desire to leverage projects for a Senator’s state or simply to frustrate progress. It is precisely these kinds of tactics that enrage the American people.”


Jeanne Shaheen Press Release 2/11/2010; Boston Globe 10/2/2009; NY Times 2/11/2010; White House Press Release 2/11/10

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