At first glance it seemed as though Republican Rep. Vicky Hartzler of Missouri had broken with the majority of her fellow conservatives in the House of Representatives last week to renew an expanded version of the 1994 Violence Against Women Act, which funds programs to assist survivors of sexual assault and domestic abuse.
A statement from her office proclaimed: "Hartzler votes to protect women from acts of violence."
“Violence against women, in all its forms, is unacceptable,” Hartzler said in the statement.
But Hartzler, who was elected with strong tea party support, had voted for a Republican amendment to the bill, which failed 166-257, and against the version that’s headed for the president’s desk to be signed into law.
That bill, which originated in the Senate, passed the House 286-138 on Feb. 28 with the support of 87 Republicans and 199 Democrats. President Barack Obama is scheduled to sign it Thursday.