Republican Sen. John Cornyn may have found a way to surrender to Senate Democrats in the human trafficking bill fight.
Instead of setting up a restitution fund paid into by the perpetrators of human trafficking crimes, Cornyn is considering setting up a fund that Congress would appropriate annually, reported The Hill. That could satisfy Democrats, who are blocking the bill Cornyn sponsored over abortion language they apparently failed to notice until after they passed it unanimously through committee. (RELATED: Senate Dem Concedes Her Staff To Blame For Trafficking Bill Implosion)
The language bans federal funding of abortion, except in cases of rape, incest or life of the mother, and has been a standard addition to spending bills for decades. But Democrats argue it’s an expansion of abortion restrictions in this case, because the money would come from fines paid by trafficking perpetrators, and not taxpayer dollars. (RELATED: Democrats Pick Abortion Fight Over Trafficking Victims)
Cornyn’s new plan would still contain the language restricting abortions, but since the funds would be taxpayer dollars, Democrats could presumably get on board. However it would mean the fund for victims would cut into the budget, instead of being paid for by the perpetrators.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has said he will not move forward with the confirmation of Loretta Lynch as the next attorney general until Democrats allow the human trafficking bill to the floor. But Democrats remain adamant in their demand the abortion language be taken out of the bill, and have already played the racism and sexism cards. (RELATED: Dem Senator Accuses GOP Of Forcing Loretta Lynch To Sit In The Back Of The Bus)
Asked whether Republicans could get on board with his plan, Cornyn told reporters his idea is at least a start. “I think we’re looking for a way to get to a solution,” he said. “I think this could well be the beginning of that conversation.”