An amendment sponsored by Rep. Steve King (R-IA) would prohibit states from enacting laws that prevent animal cruelty on farms. The bill would stop state governments from placing conditions on means of production for food that is produced in other states but sold in their own state. King said the amendment would “shut down the Humane Society of the United States, PETA, and other radical organizations from creating a network of restrictive state laws that will slowly push agriculture production towards the demise.”
The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) is denouncing this bill, saying it would weaken state animal cruelty laws across the country. The organization said that “this dangerous provision, which passed on a voice vote, would prevent states from passing their own laws regarding the production of “agricultural products” – a term so broad that it could include farm animals and dogs in puppy mills. As a result, improved agriculture standards at the state level could be negated by much weaker federal legislation.”
Abused and mistreated animals are more likely to develop illnesses caused by pathogenic bacteria. That means human beings are more likely to be sickened by contaminated meat and other animal products.
Nancy Perry, senior vice president of ASPCA government relations, said, “The King Amendment essentially tramples states’ sovereign rights to enact legislation protecting animals on farms and in puppy mills, improving the environment, and protecting consumers. Even more troubling, this provision would strike down many existing state animal cruelty laws, leaving some animals with no legal proteciton.”
You can sign a petition at Change.org to tell King to stop opposing animal protection. He is an influential member of the House Agriculture Committee.