WASHINGTON — The Senate passed a sex trafficking bill on Wednesday after a bitter, weekslong fight over an anti-abortion provision tucked into it.
The Justice for Victims of Trafficking Act passed 99-0.
At its core, the bill has had broad support. It provides resources to law enforcement officials and collects fees from sex traffickers that go into a new fund for victims. But Republicans included language subjecting the victim fund to the Hyde Amendment, the federal provision that bars the use of taxpayer funds for abortions except in cases of rape and incest. Democrats refused to let the bill advance over the Hyde language, particularly because, for the first time, it would have applied to non-taxpayer funds.
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