Victims' Rights Caucus

Speeches

Mr. Speaker, as a former judge and prosecutor, I saw the impact of domestic violence firsthand.

As co-founders of the Victims' Rights Caucus, with my friend Jim Costa from California, we believe that it is important to recognize October as Domestic Violence Awareness Month .

My grandmother used to always say, ``You never hurt someone you claim you love.'' Yet, in 2014 alone, 132 women were killed in domestic violence -related incidents in Texas.

After a history of spousal abuse, 27-year-old Candace Williams Deckard of Houston, Texas, was murdered by her husband on July 17, 2014. She had three children. Her toddler was in the room when she was murdered. Another one of her children, a 7-year-old, ran down the street for help. All of these children will grow up without their mother.

Domestic violence , Mr. Speaker, is not a family issue; it is a national health issue, and it is a criminal justice issue. Domestic violence is a scourge on our national culture. We must not tolerate those who would destroy a family by abuse and murder. We must protect victims.

After all, Mr. Speaker, you never hurt someone you claim you love.

And that is just the way it is.