Johnson's stances against legislation designed to aid victims of sexual abuse - like those outlined in the bill - go back much farther than just his votes against VAWA as Wisconsinites will recall. In 2010, just prior to his run for Senate, Johnson testified in the state legislature against the Wisconsin Child Victims Act.
The Wisconsin Child Victims Act was a piece of legislation designed to eliminate the statute of limitations on child abuse and extend the time for civil suits to be brought against abusers.
It was the sex abuse scandal at St. John's School for the Deaf which served as the main motivator for passage of the bill. After decades of failed appeals to the Catholic Church and the Vatican to remove and defrock a Catholic priest who molested an estimated 200 deaf boys at the St. Francis school - the victims were unable to pursue satisfaction legally because of an arbitrary statute of limitations for criminal investigations.
(BTW if the Siren's kittens haven't seen the excellent documentary - Mea Maxima Culpa - on HBO about this very topic, please do. Consider it your holy obligation this Ash Wednesday.)
Anyhoo...who shows up during the committee hearing to testify against the legislation just a matter of weeks before announcing his bid for Senate? Yessiree, Ron Johnson. In his own words:
"I think it is extremely important to consider the economic havoc and the other victims [the Wisconsin Child Victims Act] would likely create.[...] I believe it is a valid question to ask whether the employer of a perpetrator should also be severely damaged, or possibly destroyed, in our legitimate desire for justice. [...] It would also send a chilling signal to avoid this civic minded activity in the future. [...]I have no doubt trial lawyers would benefit, I’m not so sure the actual victims would."Is it any surprise that as a Senator he would not be in favor of national legislation that sought to expand funding for investigation and treatment for victims of domestic and sexual abuse?
Fuck that, this guy went to bat for the Catholic church to protect its assets from 200 deaf men who were molested by one motherfucking priest who never faced trial and got buried in his vestments. Immigrant and Native American women? Are you kidding, c'mon man!
Happy Lent y'all.