On March 12, 2015 Senator Mitch McConnell ask for and was granted permission to address the United States Senate regarding the politics of human trafficking legislation in Congress:
“Mr. President, the Justice for Victims of Trafficking Act is one of the most bipartisan pieces of legislation one could possibly imagine.
Ever since this bipartisan human rights bill was introduced by a Democrat and a Republican in January and made publicly available for any person to read, Members of both parties have sung its praises repeatedly. This bipartisan bill has gained the support of 13 Democratic cosponsors.
Recently, Democrats voted unanimously to approve it in committee. This week Democrats consented unanimously to advance it on the floor. Even the Democratic leader himself said he “underscore[d], appreciate[d], and agree[d]” with my call to pass this bipartisan legislation overwhelmingly. “I doubt there will be problems on my side,” he said. “If there are, I will work to clear them.”
That was Monday.
By Tuesday, Democrats seemed to be threatening to filibuster human rights legislation for abused and neglected victims and children. Let me repeat that. Democrats are now threatening to filibuster human rights legislation for abused and neglected victims and children. So why?
Democrats now say they don’t like language that has been in the bill since it was introduced months ago that does nothing more than reaffirm the bipartisan law of the land. That is all that language does. This bipartisan provision was on page 4 of this modest-sized bill, so Democrats obviously knew it was there to begin with. Democrats obviously wouldn’t have cosponsored the bill or voted for it in committee or called for passage on the floor if they hadn’t read the bill first.
These Democrats surely don’t want to see more quotes such as this one from an official with the Coalition Against Trafficking in Women. She said: “Senate Democrats are choosing a phantom problem over real victims.”
But if these Democrats truly are having second thoughts about supporting such important human rights legislation, they are free to offer an amendment. But let’s not filibuster bipartisan help for vulnerable victims just to make a point for leftwing special interest groups.
Our Democratic friends have to resist the siren song of their pollsters who tell them that the path to victory lies in turning bipartisan bills into manufactured fights over cultural issues. Americans are looking for statesmen and stateswomen on the Democratic side to stand up–stand up–and help us emancipate the victims of modern slavery, not score another empty political point.
So I am calling on these Democrats to help us do that. Help is almost there for the vulnerable victims of these awful crimes. Surely no leftwing special interest group is more important than fighting modern-day slavery. So the Democratic cosponsors and declared supporters of this bill need to keep working with us in a bipartisan way to ensure that help comes.”
Source: Congressional Record
See video: Hidden America: Chilling New Look at Sex Trafficking in the US https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gSgTmcq-bBk
See video: Teens as Young as 13 Rescued From Super Bowl Sex Trafficking https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pOF9cYSS014