This news item caught my eye - as if there aren't enough laws on the books - this one is another proposed expansion of the federales into state matters. The Human Trafficking Act passed in 2000 is up for renewal and some special interest groups want the law expanded to include prostitution.
Dorchen Leidholdt who is quoted in the article is quite a character whose activities included suing Larry Flynt and Hustler magazine for referring to her in an Asshole Of The Month column and being the founder of Women Against Pornography a defucnt group which lasted about a decade in the 80's.
The only notable thing about the debate is whether prostitutes should be considered trafficking victims. There is no debate about sex workers and consensual sex among adults and repealing prostitution laws - as to be expected - even given the 535 members of Congress who have at one time or another engaged in adult consensual sex with an adult sex worker with remuneration for the sex worker services - not including high ranking members of various government agencies and the Pentagon and so on and so on and so forth.
Proposal could turn FBI into a vice squad
Thursday, November 29, 2007
(11-29) 04:00 PST Washington --
Local vice cops, who for decades have led the law-enforcement crackdown on prostitution, could soon have an unwilling partner: FBI agents.
The Justice Department is fighting legislation that would expand federal law to cover prostitution cases, saying that it would divert agents from more serious crimes. Although police still would handle the majority of cases, Justice officials said the law would force them to send agents to investigate pimps and bring cases in federal courts as well.
Some activists and members of Congress think prostitution should be a federal crime.
"It's mind-boggling that the Justice Department would be fighting this," said Dorchen Leidholdt, a founding board member of the Coalition Against Trafficking in Women, a group pushing the change. "They have the power to pick and choose the cases they want to prosecute. They don't have to prosecute local pimps if they don't want to."
The new provision is part of a bill reauthorizing the federal human trafficking statute, which passed Congress in 2000. The House Foreign Affairs Committee has approved the legislation, which has bipartisan support and is expected to be taken up by the full House next week. Its prospects in the Senate are unclear.
The battle against trafficking is a major priority for the Bush administration, which is attacking the problem with 10 federal agencies reporting to a Cabinet-level task force chaired by Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. But there has been heated debate - even among the dozens of organizations fighting trafficking in the United States - over whether prostitutes should be considered trafficking victims.