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Arizona Republican proposes porn tax to help fund Trump’s border wall

Sen. Gail Griffin seen on the Senate floor at the Arizona Capitol in Phoenix, May 4, 2016.
Sen. Gail Griffin seen on the Senate floor at the Arizona Capitol in Phoenix, May 4, 2016. AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin

An Arizona State lawmaker has proposed a bill that would slap a tax on pornography, with some of the proceeds going towards funding President Donald Trump’s border wall.

Sen. Gail Griffin’s bill would require all electronic devices to come with software to block access to porn websites. Adults wanting to view porn would have to shell out $20 for the privilege.

Those fees would then be used to set up a fund called the John McCain Human Trafficking and Child Exploitation Fund, named for the late Arizona Republican senator and noted border wall opponent.

The bill lists 10 causes for which the John McCain Fund would provide grants. No. 1 on the list is “build a border wall between Mexico and this state [Arizona] or fund border security.”

Other causes range from funding of health, education and housing services to programs to prevent sexual assault, child abuse and human trafficking.

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It’s unclear if the McCain family has offered its blessing for the bill to be named after the legendary senator, who died in August 2018. Global News has reached out to the family for comment.

McCain famously said he declined to vote for Trump in the 2016 presidential election and provoked Trump’s ire by voting against his efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare.

In his farewell statement, McCain said America’s greatness was weakened “when we hide behind walls, rather than tear them down.”

He also requested that Trump not attend his funeral.

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The Arizona Mirror reported that Griffin’s bill may be linked to anti-LGBTQ activist Chris Sevier, who runs a website named “Human Trafficking and Child Exploitation Prevention Act” — which also happens to be the title of the bill.

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Sevier has previously been linked to pornography tax campaigns in other states.

In March, a Rhode Island senator withdrew a bill proposing a $20 porn tax after it was revealed that Sevier championed it as the “Elizabeth Smart Law” — after the Utah kidnapping victim and anti-trafficking campaigner — without Smart’s permission.

Chris Sevier is seen in a 2014 booking photo taken after his arrest for harassment threats against country singer John Rich.
Chris Sevier is seen in a 2014 booking photo taken after his arrest for harassment threats against country singer John Rich. Metropolitan Nashville Police Department via AP

That same month, a Utah judge threw out a lawsuit from Sevier in which he targeted gay marriage by arguing that he should be able to marry his laptop.

— With files from the Associated Press