On Monday’s Full Frontal, Samantha Bee called for the military to work harder to investigate rape and assault within its branches. Later this week, the Senate will vote on the National Defense Authorization Act. “That’s when America takes all the money and gives it to the military,” and little of it seems to be going to prosecute sexual assault charges.
A 2014 Department of Defense Survey said that of 20,300 sexual assault cases, only 6,131 reports were filed. This is the result of the process by which assaulted members of the military must alert their commanders, who often must admit failure in their own leadership in order to admit sexual assault is happening in their unit.
“Commanders can’t indict a rapist without indicting themselves,” Bee explains, and so the men and women who report assault are 12 times more likely to suffer punishment than their assaulter.
Three years ago, New York Senator Kristen Gillibrand proposed the Military Justice Improvement Act, which would take responsibility away from commanders and transfer jurisdiction to military prosecutors.
The bill is so popular, even obstructionists Rand Paul and Ted Cruz support it, but this “rare, majestic bipartisan bill” has not passed because President Obama has not yet endorsed it.
“If the president came out and supported this bill, it would be done,” Gillibrand explains in the clip above. “It would be over. He promised, I think now close to three years ago, that he was going to give the military one year to fix things. Well, I can show him this year’s report…They have not fixed things.”
As much as she hates to say it, Bee must admit, “Ted Cruz is right!” So take action, Obama!