I have great news to share with you: The Farm Bill -- which includes two major wins on animal welfare issues -- has passed the House and Senate and is now on President Obama's desk awaiting his signature.
The bill includes a provision making it a federal crime to attend or bring a child under the age of 16 to an animal fighting event, based on the Animal Fighting Spectator Prohibition Act, which will fortify the federal law against organized and barbaric dogfighting and cockfighting rings. Spectator admission fees and high-stakes gambling dollars finance this criminal industry and without spectators, it will be more difficult for dogfighting and cockfighting rings to make a profit.
The Farm Bill also jettisoned the dangerous and overreaching “King amendment,” which sought to nullify state laws setting standards for agricultural production and threatened so many laws on animal welfare around the country. Defeating the King amendment and enacting the animal fighting spectator legislation are top priorities for The HSUS. Now, we await and look forward to President Obama finishing the job by signing the Farm Bill.
Wayne Pacelle, President & CEO
The Humane Society of the United States