PAWS Magazine

Issue 36, Winter 1998

What's the score?

Dolphin-Safe Tuna (105th Congress)

H.R. 408, the International Dolphin Conservation Program, significantly changed the International Dolphin Conservation Act, the Marine Mammal Protection Act, and the International Protection Consumer Information Act. The bill ended the existing embargo on dolphin-deadly tuna (tuna caught by chasing, encircling, and capturing dolphins with purse-seine nets). The bill passed the House by a 262 to 166 vote. After considerable debate, some concessions were won in S. 39, a similar Senate bill. The Senate approved S. 39 by a 99 to 0 vote and it was signed into law August 15, 1997. Representatives were rated with if they voted against the bill; if they voted for the bill they were rated with . Senators were rated with + because, although animal protection agencies actively opposed this measure, the amendment did somewhat improve the bill on behalf of dolphins.

Campfire—Taxpayer Funding of Trophy Hunts (105th Congress)

The Fox/Miller Amendment to H.R. 2159, the 1998 Foreign Operations Appropriations bill, would have prevented the use of tax dollars to promote trophy hunting or the international trade in elephant ivory, elephant hides, or rhinoceros horn. Since 1989, the U.S. government has subsidized CAMPFIRE (Communal Areas Management Program for Indigenous Resources), an economic development program for the government of Zimbabwe that raises income for local people through trophy hunting. Animal protection agencies supported the amendment, but it failed in the House by a 159 to 267 vote. A similar amendment offered in the Senate passed by a voice vote, but was stripped during a conference committee. A indicates a representative voted in favor of this amendment; a indicates he/she voted against it. Senators were rated with VV (voice vote) because there is no record of which senators voted in favor of the amendment.

Bear Protection (105th Congress)

H.R. 619 and S. 263, the Bear Protection Act, would ban the sale, import, export, and interstate commerce in bear viscera or by-products. A indicates that a representative or senator co-sponsored this bill; a + indicates that a representative or senator has yet to co-sponsor this bill.

Canned Hunting (105th Congress)

H.R. 1202 and S. 995, the Captive Exotic Animal Protection Act, targets canned hunting, or the hunting of tame, exotic mammals in enclosed areas for entertainment or a trophy. A indicates that a representative or senator co-sponsored this bill; a + indicates that a representative or senator has yet to co-sponsor this bill.

Downed Animals (105th Congress)

H.R. 453 and S. 850, the Downed Animal Protection Act, would prohibit the sale at livestock markets of downed animals–farm animals who, because of injury or illness, are unable to stand or walk without assistance. A indicates that a representative or senator co-sponsored this bill; a + indicates that a representative or senator has yet to co-sponsor this bill.

Endangered Species (105th Congress)

H .R. 2351 would strengthen the current Act by providing habitat for endangered species. This Act has strong support from the environmental community. A indicates that a representative or senator cosponsored this bill; a + indicates that a representative or senator has yet to co-sponsor this bill. There is a second Endangered Species bill, S. 1180, entitled the "Endangered Species Recovery Act of 1997". This bill would not protect endangered species, as its title indicates. Instead, it provides loopholes to evade the law and promote commercial development over species protection. Senators were rated with a + because neither of them have signed on as co-sponsors. However, this bill is moving quickly through Congress; it has already been placed on the Senate’s leglistative calendar. Call your senators with your disapproval before this bill gets to the Senate floor (see page 10 for more information on this bill).

Pet Safety (105th Congress)

H.R. 594 would prohibit the sale of dogs and cats from Class B animal dealers to research facilities, thereby removing the incentive for some disreputable dealers to steal and sell family pets to laboratories. A indicates that a representative or senator cosponsored this bill; a + indicates that a representative or senator has yet to co-sponsor this bill.

Leghold Traps (105th Congress)

H.R. 1176 and S.B. 1557 would end the use of steel jaw leghold traps on animals in the United States. This bill was recently introduced and currently sits in the Committe on Environment and Public Works; now is the critical time to contact your legislators and urge them to sign on as co-sponsors. A + indicates that a representative or senator has yet to co-sponsor this bill.

Lolita

PAWS has launched a campaign to rehabilitate and return Lolita, the oldest orca in captivity, to her native waters of the Puget Sound. A indicates a representative or senator signed on as a supporter of Lolita’s homecoming campaign; a indicates that a representative or senator declined.

Makah Whaling

Representative Jack Metcalf authored a colleague letter for representatives in opposition to commercial whaling in the United States and the resumption of "cultural" whaling by the Makah tribe. A_indicates a representative signed in support; a_indicates that a representative declined. Senators were rated with N/A because the letter was not circulated to senators.

League of Conservation Voters (LCV)

The LCV is the bipartisan lobbying arm of the environmental movement and issues a scorecard each year based on key environmental votes, including rollbacks of environmental safeguard regulations, oil drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, nuclear energy development, mining-law reform and EPA regulations. High scores indicate strong support for the environment.

The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS)

The HSUS is the nation’s largest animal protection organization and scored elected leaders of the 104th Congress on issues that include mink subsidies, calling for more stringent regulations for puppy mills, canned hunts of captive exotic animals, hunting and trapping issues and the Endangered Species Act. High scores indicate strong support for animal protection and the environment.

The Fund for Animals (FFA)

The FFA is a Washington DC-based animal protection organization that specializes in wildlife issues and ranked elected leaders of the 104th Congress on issues that include mink subsidies, endangered species, animal experimentation, wildlife refuges, animal damage control and the International Dolphin Conservation Act. High scores indicate strong support for animal protection and the environment.



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