SWERF Democrat, Christian Lobby Team Up to Push 'Age Verification' Law in Maine

SWERF Democrat, Christian Lobby Team Up to Push 'Age Verification' Law in Maine

AUGUSTA, Maine — Democratic State Rep. Lois Reckitt has teamed up with Maine’s Christian Civic League to propose a new “age verification” law, as that state’s version of the controversial legislation that religious Republicans have been promoting around the country in an effort to reinstitute obscenity prosecutions at the federal level.

Reckitt said that during the 2024 legislative session, she intends to submit a copycat bill modeled on Louisiana’s age verification law. That bill was drafted by a religious “porn addiction” therapist and legislator, and has served as a template for legislators in other states, as part of an anti-porn campaign centered around what conservative activists are now openly referring to as “Pornhub laws.” 

Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Montana, Texas, Virginia and Utah have now all passed vaguely-worded age verification measures promoted by religious activists.

Reckitt, who represents South Portland and describes herself as a feminist, justified her promotion of the bill with arguments identical to long-standing SWERF (sex worker-exclusionary radical feminist) positions condemning all sex work and claiming all porn is connected to abuse, the Bangor Daily News reported.

“There’s a very tight interconnection, in my view, between pornography and both violence against women and prostitution,” Reckitt declared.

She added that thoughts of her grandchildren have also motivated her as she works to compel every person in Maine, regardless of age, to provide their personal data if they wish to watch adult content.

Democrats Quietly Siding With Religious Conservatives

Although Democrats have largely been silent about their overwhelming support for these religious conservative proposals — which are being touted by Republicans as bipartisan wins around the country — some have started revealing the reasons behind these alliances of convenience.

As XBIZ reported, Virginia’s age verification bill was signed into law by Gov. Glenn Youngkin in May and went into effect July 1, the same day that a similar bill took effect in Mississippi. The bill received bipartisan support, although it was later revealed by Democratic State Sen. Scott A. Surovell that he had engineered a vote-trading scheme with the bill's Republican author over an unrelated bill.

In Texas last week, the state’s interim attorney general, Angela Colmenero, issued a response to the Free Speech Coalition (FSC) lawsuit against Texas’ age verification law, stating her belief that adult content is “obscene” and therefore not entitled to First Amendment protections.

XBIZ contacted state, House and Senate offices of the Texas Democratic Party to ask about Democratic support for the Texas law — which in addition to age verification compels websites to post scientifically debunked anti-porn propaganda — but all declined to answer.

Last month, leading Republican culture warrior Terry Schilling, of the American Principles Project (APP), admitted to Fox News that pressure groups were using age verification laws to "build momentum at the state level, show that it can be done, use the laboratories of democracy, and then build up momentum to get the next attorney general of the United States to actually enforce" existing obscenity laws against all adult content on the ground that it may potentially reach minors online.

 SWERF Choosing Religious Lobbyists Over Inclusive Feminists

Reckitt’s staunch SWERF beliefs have alienated her from more inclusive feminist groups, like the Maine Women’s Lobby, which she co-founded.

In June, Reckitt was instrumental in passing a Nordic Model law to punish all sex-work clients and anyone sex workers may rely on for support in their jobs. These laws are opposed by most sex-worker advocacy groups as punitive, criminalizing attempts to decimate their livelihoods, leading to increased police surveillance and abuse of sex workers.

The same month, Reckitt penned an opinion piece for the Portland Press Herald, lambasting other feminists for listening to the overwhelming majority of sex workers who support decriminalization and condemn the Nordic Model.

“In 1978, I co-founded the Maine Women’s Lobby with the core belief that women here deserve to live free from violence and in a state where equality was a reality,” Reckitt wrote. “From our earliest moments, we were clear that Maine’s most vulnerable need laws protecting and ultimately allowing them to thrive. Forty-five years later, I’m heartbroken to see the organization I dearly love aggressively support policies emboldening pimps, sex buyers and brothel owners, while trampling the rights of sex trade survivors.”

Disregarding both LGBTQ+ sex workers and any possibility of consensual sex work among adults, Reckitt’s opinion piece suggests that sex work exclusively involves cis women being exploited and abused “disproportionately” by “white, economically privileged” cis male clients.

Reckitt is in her fourth consecutive term in the Maine House of Representatives, and is term-limited from running again next year, the Bangor Daily News Reported.

Main Image: Maine State Rep. Lois Reckitt (D).

Copyright © 2024 Adnet Media. All Rights Reserved. XBIZ is a trademark of Adnet Media.
Reproduction in whole or in part in any form or medium without express written permission is prohibited.

More News

Seoul Authorities Force Cancellation of Adult Expo for 'Distorting Perceptions of Sex'

Seoul authorities repeatedly prevented 2024 KXF The Fashion — a popular Korean adult industry expo featuring Japanese AV performers — scheduled for this week from finding a suitable venue, leading organizers to cancel the event.

FSC to Hold Discussion on Adult Industry Rights With Congressional Candidate Joe Cohn

Free Speech Coalition will hold a virtual discussion with Joe Cohn, a strong advocate for the adult industry’s rights who is running for Congress in November.

Sophie Dee, Ricky Johnson to Deliver 'XBIZ Talks' at Miami Conference

XBIZ is pleased to announce that Sophie Dee and Ricky Johnson will each deliver an “XBIZ Talk” at next month’s XBIZ Miami conference

FSC to Host Webinar on Derisking and the Adult Industry

The Free Speech Coalition (FSC) is hosting a webinar on derisking, titled "Derisking: Examining Its Impact on the Adult Industry's Access to Banking," on April 24 at 11 a.m. (PDT).

Democratic Governor Fails to Veto Kansas Age Verification Bill

Kansas’ Democratic governor, Laura Kelly, expressed strong reservations about the state’s version of the age verification bills being sponsored around the country by anti-porn religious conservative activists, but ultimately decided not to veto it, allowing the legislation to become law by default without her signature.

FSC's Alison Boden Testifies Against California Age Verification Bill, Urges Action to Defeat It

Free Speech Coalition Executive Director Alison Boden testified Tuesday against AB 3080, California’s version of the age verification bills being sponsored around the country by anti-porn religious conservative activists.

Phoenix Marie Sues Aylo, Danny D Over Incident on Digital Playground Set

Phoenix Marie has filed a lawsuit against Aylo, performer/producer Danny D and other defendants, alleging she has suffered defamation and damage to her career over a 2023 incident on a Digital Playground set in Spain.

New Premium Creator Platform 'Lemon Social' Launches

Premium creator platform Lemon Social has debuted.

Atlanta Authorities Renew Attack on Adult Boutique Tokyo Valentino

The saga of beleaguered Georgia adult boutique Tokyo Valentino continues with a renewed attempt by authorities to shut down another of its locations.

MomPOV Producer Pleads Guilty in GirlsDoPorn Case

MomPOV producer Doug Wiederhold, who was formerly the partner of GirlsDoPorn owner Michael Pratt as well as the first male talent for GDP, pleaded guilty Thursday to a federal conspiracy charge.

Show More