Republicans called "pro-rape" for Franken amendment vote, but what about the White House?


When Sen. Al Franken's amendment stopping defense contractors from preventing employees to take rape claims to court passed the U.S. Senate, many people were quick to call out the 30 Republicans who voted "No".

Jon Stewart at the Daily Show made a good segment about it and now there is a "Republicans for Rape" Web site.

But what about the Department of Defense and the White House? They were against Franken's amendment too.

Talking Points Memo looks into this angle, which appears to have been ignored by many of the people calling out the Republicans.

Franken's amendment would ban the Pentagon from using contractors who make their employees sign away their right to sue. Franken's interest in the topic came after a KBR employee was drug, gang raped, and locked in a storage container.

TPM argues that Republicans may have been against the amendment for the same reasons cited by the Democratic administration.

More from TPM:

The Department of Defense sent a letter to the Senate urging lawmakers to vote no on the amendment, according to the Huffington Post.

The department argued that it and its subcontractors "may not be in a position to know about such things," i.e., whether contractors employ the mandatory arbitration clauses. "Enforcement would be problematic," the note read, because contractors may not be privy to what's in their subcontractors' contracts.

The department suggests that "it may be more effective" to seek a law that would prohibit the clauses in any business contracts within U.S. jurisdiction.

The White House does say it supports "the intent of the amendment," spokesman Tommy Vietor told TPM.