GOP Challenger Dan Matthews Takes on DV False Allegations
From the website of GOP candidate Dan Matthews, who is challenging Democratic incumbent Rick Larsen in the Second Congressional District of Washington:
“Violence against women is morally repulsive and totally unacceptable. Shame on Rick Larsen and his Democrat colleagues for unnecessarily politicizing such important issues to gain political points.
The habit of Rep. Larsen to pander about with talk of a non-existent “war on women” clearly demonstrates why there is so much gridlock in Washington, D.C. There are a broad range of reasonable concerns with regard to the VAWA. When are we going to have an adult conversation over the challenges we face without demonizing those with other points of view? It’s time for some leadership.
The VAWA offers women both a ‘tactical advantage’ and a ‘powerful weapon’ when they want to ‘get back’ at a man, have regrets the next morning, or want out of a marriage for any reason at all. Allegations of abuse can cause men to lose their homes, jobs, children, and reputations in the community. Once they’ve been thrown in jail because of mandatory arrests and have been assumed guilty, where do they go to get their reputations and their jobs back when the accusations are proven false?
In the past, even the ACLU had problems with some Constitutional protections being lost in the Act. The right to face one’s accuser certainly comes to mind. We need to examine the mindset that all men are guilty and all women are victims. Law enforcement officials observe that at times it is women who are perpetuators of domestic violence. A balanced and objective review of the Act demonstrates that the Act does not adequately protect men from false allegations.
With regard to the provisions for illegal immigrants, Rep. Lamar Smith (R-TX), chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, argued during a hearing that those accused of abusing women should be interviewed to check if the victims are trying to game the system. “Currently, there are no safeguards in place to prevent fraud or to prevent an immigrant from fabricating tales of spousal abuse,” Smith said. “Claims of battery and abuse go unchallenged. The immigrant is presumed to be the victim.” Immigration law should not be a means for abusers to attack their victims, and this Act should not provide an opening for immigrants to play the system. Due process is still a central tenet of our Constitution – for women and men alike.
In addition, this is but another example of constantly turning to federal control rather than local control of issues, thereby creating or expanding another federal bureaucracy. Reauthorization of the Violence against Women Act ignores the fact that those in state and local government are better caretakers of these types of victims and better punishers of these types of criminals. The knee-jerk reaction of Rick Larsen to remove this issue from local control and give more power to Washington DC betrays his mistrust of our own citizens — and of our local law enforcement officials — to take care of our own.”