Legislation to outlaw paying for sex has stumbled at Holyrood after a plea to fast-track the Bill was rejected.
The proposal, tabled by Labour MSP Rhoda Grant, will now go through a consultation phase rather than taking the quicker route through the Scottish Parliament.
Ms Grant argues that the Purchase of Sex Bill will reduce the demand for prostitution and build on existing laws against soliciting and kerb crawling.
An earlier attempt to pass legislation means the issues have already been aired, she told MSPs on the Justice Committee.
Members turned down the fast-track approach in a vote taken in private.
In a written submission to the committee, Ms Grant argued: "My proposal will make the purchase of sex illegal in Scotland, with the aim of reducing the demand for prostitution.
"In addition, by strengthening the existing legislative framework against purchasers, Scotland should become an unattractive market for prostitution and therefore other associated serious criminal activities, such as people-trafficking for sexual exploitation, would be disrupted."
It is possible for a consenting adult aged 18 or over to have sex with another consenting adult in return for payment without an offence being committed, the committee was told in her briefing note.
A previous attempt for a total ban was introduced by former Labour MSP Trish Godman as part of the Criminal Justice and Licensing Bill, but it was not adopted.
Ms Godman wanted to create three new offences on the purchase, advertising and facilitating of sex.
Ms Grant told the committee the first consultation has influenced the new proposal.
"If you have a consultation and you're influenced by the outcome of that consultation, and that then means you have to go to have a further consultation, you would actually never get anything done," she said.
"If you're listening, you're being influenced. I think it's very clear that the consultation worked well."
She conceded that further discussion would not damage the Bill but added: "This seems to have jumped through more hoops already than most Bills coming forward.
"While I don't think it would damage it, I don't think it would bring anything new to the argument."
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