The owner of the famed Moonlite BunnyRanch in Mound House, Nevada took down a three-term assemblyman in the Republican primary on Tuesday as the state is trying to decide whether to end legal prostitution. Dennis Hof defeated hospital executive James Oscarson and will go on to face Democrat Lesia Romanov in November.
Hof, who wrote a book titled Art of the Pimp, credited President Donald Trump for his victory. "It's all because Donald Trump was the Christopher Columbus for me," Hof told the Associated Press. "He found the way and I jumped on it." Hof even dubbed himself the "Trump of Pahrump," in reference to his hometown.
Nevada is the only state in America that allows prostitution. It is only allowed in strictly regulated and licensed brothels, which are only permitted in counties with fewer than 700,000 residents. Brothels are operating legally in seven counties but are banned in the counties that contain Las Vegas and Reno.
There has been a movement in the state to ban prostitution completely. People in Lyon County will vote on a referendum to outlaw brothels in November, and activists are trying to gather enough signatures to get a similar measure on the ballot in Nye County.
Hof said that even if the referendum passes, prostitution will not go away. It will just continue to operate illegally. "The business is not going away," Hof said. "It's the oldest business in the world."
The numbers appear to back up Hof's opinion. Research indicates that legal prostitution brings in around $75-million in revenue annually, while people spend close to $5-billion every year on illegal prostitution in the state.
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