Trophy Hunting Provisions Lard Up Trojan Horse Bill in Congress

By on January 21, 2016 with 10 Comments By Wayne Pacelle

The so-called Sportsmen’s Act in Congress was always a misnomer. The bill provides a small class of trophy hunters free rein to kill native carnivores or bring their body parts into the United States without delivering anything practical or meaningful for rank-and-file hunters and fishermen. Yesterday, this bad bill became an atrocious one after proponents larded on a series of destructive amendments during a key committee voting session. As a result, The HSUS is calling on the Senate to leave the bill aside and take no further action on it.

In yesterday’s mischief, U.S. Senator John Barrasso, R-Wyoming, won passage of an amendment to strip federal protection for endangered gray wolves in Wyoming and the Great Lakes states, just weeks after the House and Senate decided to jettison a similar provision from the $1.1 trillion end-of-year spending bill. The proposal from Barrasso, which mirrors a bill he recently introduced with Senator Ron Johnson, R-Wisconsin, would subvert two federal court rulings and cherry-pick a species from the federal list of endangered species for purely political reasons. When wolves were delisted in 2012, 20 percent of their Wisconsin population was wiped out in just one hunting season, including 17 entire family units. In a three-year period, more than 1,500 wolves were killed in the Great Lakes states alone. The federal courts put a stop to this reckless mistreatment and slaughter of wolves, and politicians shouldn’t undercut judicial review of delisting actions.

Also yesterday, Senator Dan Sullivan, R-Alaska, secured an amendment to block an Obama Administration proposed rule to stop the worst predator control and killing practices on national wildlife refuges in Alaska. Brown bear baiting, aerial gunning, and other forms of slaughtering our nation’s top carnivores should not happen anywhere, but least of all on federal lands designated as national wildlife refuges. Alaska doesn’t own the refuges – all American people do – and what a travesty to allow these lands set aside for wildlife to become a playground for the most extreme and inhumane trophy hunters and trappers.

The Sportsmen’s Act was never really about giving hunters access to public lands, since they already have the full run of nearly 500 million acres of U.S. Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management lands. It was about capitulating to the trophy-hunting lobby and deregulating certain hunting practices. Controversial provisions, including allowing 41 hunters to bring polar bear trophies into the United States and preventing the Environmental Protection Agency from regulating the use of lead ammunition or fishing tackle, are blatant giveaways to a small class of elite Safari Club members and to ammunition makers.

There’s not one serious-minded deer or duck hunter who gets anything out of this bill.

It’s easy to attach an innocuous-sounding title to an ugly grab-bag of giveaways to a special interest group. Any lawmaker who claims he’s for sportsmen by supporting this bill is guilty of grandstanding, and voters will sniff out this kind of trickery and political bait-and-switch behavior. If Congress exhibits the worst of judgment and caves in to the trophy-hunting lobby by passing this scam of a bill, we call upon President Obama to give it a clean kill shot.

Tell Congress to stop trophy hunting»

Public Policy (Legal/Legislative), Wildlife/Marine Mammals

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  1. Sally Palmer says:

    This breaks my heart for the animals, the people who have worked so hard to save them, and our beautiful planet. It is yet another Flint River, where greedy, inhumane people destroy not only with no thought or conscience, but also with frightening malice and delight. My question is, do we as HSUS members have time to pledge to get at least 10 or 25 others (or however many it is estimated to take) to write their congressional leaders and let them know trophy hunting at the expense of wildlife must not be tolerated? This is no time to despair; that is what any kind of evil strategically works for in its opponents. This is the time to fight back until we win.

  2. margie anne says:

    We are fighting this odious bill tooth and nail.

    This piece of crap belongs in the garbage can. Now they want to remove protections on the wolves?

    What is wrong with this man???

  3. David Bernazani says:

    The astonishingly inappropriately-named “Sportsmen’s Act” belongs in the Dumpster of Bills So Bad They Don’t Deserve to Even be Considered. There is absolutely nothing sporting about killing animals unaware that some moron with a high-powered rifle is about to murder them. This Act will bring nothing but shame and disgrace to all Americans for all of history.

  4. Tessa Hayward says:

    Years ago you wiped out the wolf population. Then introduced them in and now you want to wipe them out again.what is it with your bloody murderers. You don’t eat wolf as far as I’m just want to hang their body parts on your walls. Idiots.

  5. Denni A says:

    Wayne – please be aware that the NRA, SCI and Sportmen’s Club has begun recruiting the Trump boys for their lobbying efforts. we all know the Trump boys are Trophy Animal killers who travelled to Africa some years back to kill endangered species for fun. last night during a Donald Trump press conference the oldest son Donald Jr. took to the podium to peddle Sports Hunting as part of 2nd Amendment rights. he even boasted about teaching and training the next generation to become trophy animal killers, in other words cultivating the next generation of “Walter Palmer’s”.

    be on the watch for the Trump boys on the campaign trail. the NRA and SCI are looking to fund Trump’s campaign using his animal killing sons as mouthpieces.

  6. DENISE BAUDIN says:

    U.S. Senator JOHN BARRASSO, R-Wyoming & Senator Ron Johnson, R-Wisconsin
    So, you “won” passage of an amendment to strip federal protection for endangered gray wolves in Wyoming and the Great Lakes states. I BET YOU’RE REAL PROUD OF YOURSELF John Barrasso!!!
    YOU WANT MORE WALTER PALMER-like trophy/slaughtering hunters in WYOMING, USA. SHAME ON YOU BUDDY.
    You “will build a thriving Indian Country” by killing/slaughtering the wildlife there.

    So many words come to mind, but I cannot write them here in public… It would be improper.
    REMEMBER THAT WHAT GOES AROUND, COMES AROUND. Good luck, you will need it.

  7. Kevin Gatton says:

    Senator Barrasso Johnson and Sullivan you three will go down in history as the worst Senator ‘s of the 21st century., committed llllllllllllllll

  8. BillMittelstadt says:

    Clearly I oppose this bill.
    Enough damn killing…..please let these animals just LIVE THEIR LIVES!
    Please do the right thing, and kill this bill, instead of more animals…..

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