January 18, 2013 — Idaho Rep. Ron Mendive (R) on Wednesday asked whether the American Civil Liberties Union of Idaho's support for abortion rights means the group also supports prostitution, the AP/Idaho Statesman reports.
Mendive posed the question to ACLU of Idaho Executive Director Monica Hopkins while the group was making a presentation about its legislative priorities. He added that prostitution is "a woman's choice."
Hopkins replied that prostitution is illegal, while abortion rights are constitutionally protected. She noted that prostitution is not always a "choice" and that some women are victims of human trafficking.
Mendive was "correlating a criminal action with something that is constitutionally protected," which are "two completely separate issues," Hopkins said after the event.
Mendive said he thinks that ACLU of Idaho is promoting a "double standard" and that prostitution is a choice "more so than an abortion would be." He added later that his comments might have been a "poor illustration" of his point (Boone, AP/Idaho Statesman, 1/16).
Debra Ness, publisher & president, National Partnership
Andrea Friedman, associate editor & director of reproductive health programs, National Partnership
Marya Torrez, associate editor & senior reproductive health policy counsel, National Partnership
Melissa Safford, associate editor & policy advocate for reproductive health, National Partnership
Perry Sacks, assistant editor & health program associate, National Partnership
Cindy Romero, assistant editor & communications assistant, National Partnership
Justyn Ware, editor
Amanda Wolfe, editor-in-chief
Heather Drost, Hanna Jaquith, Marcelle Maginnis, Ashley Marchand and Michelle Stuckey, staff writers
Tucker Ball, director of new media, National Partnership