On October 7, 2009, the Senate voted to not fund companies who mandate their employees sign contracts that  forfeits the employee’s  right to file sue for sexual assault or harassment. Freshman Senator Al Franken (D-MN) sponsored and pushed through the amendment to the Department of Defense Appropriations Act of 2010 to close an existing  loophole. The loophole came to light because one  women who would not remain silent, Jamie Leigh Jones.

Jones contract and similar contracts block an employee from bringing suit in court by requiring binding arbitration out of court, rendering this private arbitration the victim’s only legal option. Shamefully, U.S. law has allowed these contracts to continue and make no mistake the U.S. government paid hefty sums to the companies that invented and maintained these contracts.

Jones, was a former contractor for Halliburton’s subsidiary KBR and on her 4th day on the job working for KBR in Baghdad in 2005; she was drugged, gang raped by fellow contractors and thrown into a shipping container. But, she can tell her story better than I, here is an interview from the Rachel Maddow Show, that you have to see to believe.

How proud are we, North Carolina’s own Richard Burr (R-NC) is among the 30 pro-rape Republican Senators who voted against Franken’s amendment and surprisingly the only two Republican female Senators did not vote. An interesting juxtaposition should be noted here, Burr recently sponsored legislation establishing the Military Spouse Appreciation Day. I wonder if Burr’s legislation includes the 1 in 3 female soldiers who are raped in the military? After all I am sure some of them are spouse’s. Would these 30 Republican Senators also consider Rape a pre-existing condition given their stance on health care reform? I just fired off a email to Burr asking these very questions,  I’ll let you know his reply, that is if I get one (snark).

Here is a list in alphabetical order of the Pro-Rape Senators who showed broad support for gang rapist by voting against Franken’s amendment:

Alexander (R-TN)
Barrasso (R-WY)
Bond (R-MO)
Brownback (R-KS)
Bunning (R-KY)
Burr (R-NC)
Chambliss (R-GA)
Coburn (R-OK)
Cochran (R-MS)
Corker (R-TN)
Cornyn (R-TX)
Crapo (R-ID)
DeMint (R-SC)
Ensign (R-NV)
Enzi (R-WY)
Graham (R-SC)
Gregg (R-NH)
Inhofe (R-OK)
Isakson (R-GA)
Johanns (R-NE)
Kyl (R-AZ)
McCain (R-AZ)
McConnell (R-KY)
Risch (R-ID)
Roberts (R-KS)
Sessions (R-AL)
Shelby (R-AL)
Thune (R-SD)
Vitter (R-LA)
Wicker (R-MS)

Shame on every single one of you and Burr I can’t wait until November 2010.

[The quoted excerpt above is from Jessica Corsi’s article on the Foreign Policy Blog Network]

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