Tampa Police Cracking Down On Prostitution As Sex-Crazed Republicans Come To Town

Tampa's strip club industry is preparing for a cash-making bonanza next week as tens of thousands of Republicans come to town to blather on about family values all day before hitting Ybor City at night to get hammered and ogle some T&A. But Tampa police are drawing a line in the sand: GOP delegates will have to look elsewhere (Bradenton?) for their hookers.

The police force arrested 16 would-be prostitutes at strip clubs around town yesterday after getting word that ladies of the night may be descending on Tampa Bay for the Republican National Convention.

In a sting called "Operation Keep It Clean," a dozen Tampa cops went undercover to clubs around town trying to buy sexual favors from strippers.

Police ended up arresting 16 women -- including a 61-year-old dancer at one club -- on charges of offering to commit prostitution.

The cops say they'll be vigilant at clubs as the RNC starts next weekend, and probably for good reason.

As the New York Times reported last month, clubs around Tampa are pimping out their VIP rooms with paparazzi-evading back doors and Republican-baiting specials. An informal survey of strip club owners during past conventions found that the conservative politicians are more stripper-hungry than their liberal counterparts.

Just remember, Mittens: There's no sex in the champagne room, buddy.

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