Violence Against Women Act Ruled To Exceed Congress’ Authority

2000

In United States v. Morrison, the U.S. Supreme Court strikes down a provision in the federal Violence Against Women Act as exceeding Congress’ commerce clause authority and impinging on an area of state control. The provision, which permitted victims of sex-based violence to bring a federal lawsuit against their attackers, is found to invade states’ “police power.” Legislation about domestic violence and family law is traditionally left to the states.