(NBC News) After over a year of legislative limbo, the House passed a reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) Thursday, ending the partisan bickering that has plagued the bill since it expired in September of 2011.
The final legislation passed the lower chamber by a vote of 286 to 138 after a protracted battle over an expansion of the law and its impact in tribal communities. A majority of Republicans voted against the legislation, with 87 GOP members and all Democrats supporting it.
In a statement, President Barack Obama praised the passage of the bill, which he called "an important step towards making sure no one in America is forced to live in fear."
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