July 26, 2005  


Granger Introduces Resolution Urging Iraqis to Preserve Women’s Rights in New Constitution

WASHINGTON, D.C.—Congresswoman Kay Granger (R-Fort Worth) today introduced a resolution that encourages the Iraqi National Assembly to adopt a constitution that grants women equal rights under the law. The Iraqi Constitutional Committee, charged with drafting Iraq’s Constitution, last week released a draft of the constitution which relies on Sharia law, or traditional Islamic law, as the main source of legal precedence. If the language in the current draft is left unchanged, loopholes would exist in the constitution that would put basic human rights for women in jeopardy.


“The current draft of the constitution puts women’s basic rights in grave danger. This resolution is intended to send a message to the Iraqi people that the United States strongly encourages them to adopt a constitution that ensures women have equal rights,” said Congresswoman Granger. “The rights the Iraqi women are asking for are not ‘women’s rights,’ but fundamental human rights and freedoms enjoyed by free people around the world.”

The resolution expresses the sense of Congress that “in visits with legislators and officials of the government of the United States, Iraqi women have raised perceived limitations on their rights in a current draft of the Iraqi constitution”; that “the central principles of a true democracy, ‘liberty and justice for all,’ ‘equal justice under law,’ and ‘government of the people, by the people and for the people’ apply equally to women”; and whereas “Congress recognizes the commitment and dedication of the United States to ensure that the full rights of women are granted in the Iraqi constitution.”

“By ensuring that men and women have equal rights under the constitution, Iraqis are guaranteeing that all of their citizens will be able to participate fairly in their country’s democracy. In taking these steps, Iraq can only inspire other democratic movements in the region,” added Granger.

Granger has been very involved in helping train Iraqi women leaders and has become a leading advocate for ensuring women’s rights under the constitution. She has led two congressional delegations this year to Jordan to meet with Iraqi women leaders and has been in continuous contact with both Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice and the Bush Administration regarding the ensuring of women’s rights in Iraq’s constitution. Granger is also in the process of forming a group to support Iraqi women’s rights with EU Parliamentary Member, British Baroness Emma Nicholson.

Granger serves on the Appropriations Committee and the powerful defense appropriations subcommittee. She also serves as a majority whip. Granger is the first and only female Republican to serve in the Texas House delegation. Granger represents the 12th District of Texas and is currently serving in her fifth term in Congress.