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DiSanto: Playing Trump Against Immigrants More Important Than Helping Women Escape Sex Trafficking

Among the bad bills that the Legislature has had the good sense to kill is House Bill 1172, Representative Kevin Jensen’s (R-16/Canton) effort to play Trump on immigration and ban local governments from offering sanctuary to undocumented workers.

Various opponents pointed out that Jensen’s Trumpist anti-immigration policy plays right into the hands of sex traffickers who use the fear of arrest and deportation to trap their victims in slavery:

While law enforcement can sometimes help to protect trafficked individuals, this is not always assured. The climate of how the current administration views immigrants makes this an even more tenuous promise. While police and prosecutors try to afford protection and build their case, federal officers may take charge and initiate the process of deportation.

The ever-looming threat of deportation has some substantial consequences. It can be a significant deterrent to victims reporting their traffickers, making them even more reliant on them for a perceived protection. Many traffickers use the threat of deportation to control their victims, and the widespread  enforcement of immigration policy reinforces that fear [Stephen Wood, “The Intersection of Human Trafficking,” Harvard Law Petrie Flom Center, 2018.06.27].

Lynne DiSanto, Facebook profile photo, updated 2017.06.12.
America First… anti-trafficking policy when it’s convenient.

Senator Lynne DiSanto (R-35/Box Elder) often adopts the conservative grandstanding pose against human trafficking. HB 1172 played into the hands of human traffickers, who could say to their immigrant sex slaves, “See? The local cops all have to work for ICE. Run to the cops, and they’ll send you away.” Yet when presented with HB 1172 in Senate Local Affairs on February 25, Senator DiSanto voted for this bill and increased jeopardy for women and children trapped in sex trafficking. So did my Trumpist Senator Al Novstrup (R-3/Aberdeen) and DiSanto’s radical right-wing neighbor Senator Phil Jensen (R-33/Rapid City). Fortunately, DiSanto and fellow Trumpists were outnumbered: Senate Local Affairs killed HB 1172 on a 4–3 vote.

Apparently for DiSanto, human trafficking is a nice issue to trumpet, but it takes a backseat to supporting the xenophobic big-government rhetoric of the adulterer-in-chief.

3 Comments

  1. Debbo 2019-03-07 15:34

    Frantic Flaccid Fool’s immigration policies and general racism and misogyny have played a major role in enabling human traffickers. It’s such a horrible crime, one that some argue the current deministration participates in through its children’s prisons. I have no hard evidence on that, but anecdotal witnesses say that’s what has happened to some of the unaccounted children. I wouldn’t be surprised.

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