The Congressional midterm elections are just around the corner. One way that you can make a difference for the future of America’s horses, wild and domestic, is by making informed decisions. Here are some questions to pose to incumbents or challengers representing your congressional district and state, whether at town hall meeting, campaign event or by calling their campaign offices — and by letting them know you’ll vote accordingly.
- What actions have you taken affecting the welfare of animals in the past? Please include actions taken at the local, state, or federal levels.
- Are there any animal welfare programs or issues of importance to you that you would take the initiative on after you are elected?
- Will you support continued funding for wildlife conservation and habitat protection programs?
Wild Horse Management
The Bureau of Land Management historically has rounded up wild horses from public lands in the West and put them into government holding pens for long periods of time until they could be adopted or sold. In the last few years they have gone as far to propose the mass killing and mass sterilization of wild horses as a management tool. There more humane, efficient and cost-effective ways to manage wild horse herds, such as the application of an immunocontraception vaccine called PZP.
- Will you support funding for the BLM to use immunocontraception to manage wild horse herds?
- Do you support proposals such as mass killing of wild horses or sterilization as a management tool for population control?
- Will you work with wild horse advocates and experts to implement humane, on the range management solutions which are currently available?
The House and Senate have voted several times to stop the slaughter of American horses for human consumption, and the two states where horse slaughter plants were located – Texas and Illinois – both have anti-horse slaughter laws on the books. Americans don’t eat horsemeat and consider horses as pets rather than livestock, but our horses are killed for human consumption in France, Belgium, and other countries where horse meat is a delicacy. American thoroughbreds, family ponies, and other horses are shipped over the border to Canada or Mexico for slaughter.
- Will you support legislation such as the Safe Guard American Food Exports (SAFE) Act, to institute a permanent ban on horse slaughter and exports of horses for human consumption?
- As Congress works to pass the SAFE Act or similar ban on horse slaughter, each year the appropriations committees consider amendments that prohibits the USDA from inspecting horse slaughter plants. While this isn’t a permanent solution, it does help keep horse slaughter plants closed. Will you vote in favor of these amendments be it in committee or on the floor?