The Pentagon and various members of Congress stand united against Senator Kirsten Gillibrand’s (D-NY) push for a vote to move sexual assault cases outside the military chain of command.
Gillibrand’s proposal would “strip commanders of their authority to prosecute cases of sexual assault.”
According to Fox News, “the Pentagon’s top echelon and its allies in Congress” are staunchly opposed to the move. Moreover, two of Gillibrand’s female colleagues in the Senate–both of whom “are former prosecutors”–insist that “commanders, not an outside military lawyer, must be accountable for meting out justice.”
A vote on Gillibrand’s proposal is expected this week, and she claims to have enough votes to get it passed.
Another vote on the “annual defense policy bill” is also expected this week, and it will “strip commanders of their ability to overturn jury convictions, require dishonorable discharge or dismissal of any individual convicted of sexual assault and establish a civilian review when a decision is made not to prosecute a case.”
Follow AWR Hawkins on Twitter @AWRHawkins.