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Michael Markarian
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Today, the U.S. House of Representatives voted to kill the highly controversial Farm Bill. Although it contained some positive provisions for animals, on balance we called for the bill’s defeat because it contained an extremely sweeping and harmful provision—the “Protect... Continue reading
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Today's blog post is guest written by Humane Society Legislative Fund's new president, Sara Amundson. Today, the U.S. House Agriculture Committee passed the 2018 Farm Bill on a straight party-line vote, and now the bill advances for a vote by... Continue reading
Posted Apr 18, 2018 at Michael Markarian: Animals & Politics
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Last night, the Humane Society Legislative Fund and The Humane Society of the United States co-hosted the annual Congressional Humane Awards to honor a bipartisan group of lawmakers who led the way for animals during the last year. Dozens of... Continue reading
Posted Apr 12, 2018 at Michael Markarian: Animals & Politics
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For almost six months, Congress has delayed passing the 2018 budget to fund the government. Finally, the negotiations have ended. Congress and the White House have struck a deal, and late last night released a $1.3 trillion omnibus spending bill,... Continue reading
Posted Mar 22, 2018 at Michael Markarian: Animals & Politics
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Yesterday, the White House released President Trump’s budget proposal for Fiscal Year 2019, which continues the trend of spending cuts for some animal welfare programs. For example, two agencies that oversee animal protection are slated again for deep budget reductions—the... Continue reading
Posted Feb 13, 2018 at Michael Markarian: Animals & Politics
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As we begin the second session of the 115th Congress, let’s take a moment to look back at the highs and lows from the first session. While there were several bright spots, the new Administration and Congress produced a particularly... Continue reading
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There is a massive divide between how dogs in most American homes live versus how dogs in the nation’s thousands large-scale, commercial breeding facilities, known as puppy mills, live. Breeding dogs are treated like production machines, and can spend their... Continue reading
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For most Americans, dogs are loving companions and family members. But there’s a small and dying industry, hanging on by a thread, that crams dogs into cages for most of their lives, and forces them to run on tracks for... Continue reading
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Today, the Humane Society Legislative Fund releases its preview version of the 2017 Humane Scorecard for the first session of the 115th Congress. The Humane Scorecard is a snapshot of each federal legislator’s votes on key matters that affect the... Continue reading
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Our movement has made so much progress over the last three decades in closing the gaps in the legal framework for animal cruelty. In the mid-1980’s, only four states had felony penalties for malicious cruelty to animals, only a dozen... Continue reading
Posted Oct 31, 2017 at Michael Markarian: Animals & Politics
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In recent months, dozens of Republican lawmakers in the U.S. Congress, particularly in the U.S. House of Representatives, have been waging a hot war on wildlife. Last week the House voted to repeal restrictions on baiting of grizzly bears, killing... Continue reading
Posted Sep 12, 2017 at Michael Markarian: Animals & Politics
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While the U.S. Senate was largely occupied yesterday with the health care debate, one of its committees quietly passed an awful bill that puts wolves, eagles, and other migratory birds at risk, while giving a sweetheart deal to polar bear... Continue reading
Posted Jul 27, 2017 at Michael Markarian: Animals & Politics
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A 3-month-old Chihuahua puppy named Chewy was abandoned inside a Las Vegas airport restroom two weekends ago. The heartbreaking note from Chewy’s owner highlights a critical policy issue that should be a call to action for lawmakers. Photo courtesy of... Continue reading
Posted Jul 10, 2017 at Michael Markarian: Animals & Politics
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This week Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf, surrounded by a swarm of animal advocates and lawmakers, eagerly signed a comprehensive overhaul of the Keystone State’s anti-cruelty statutes into law. The governor wasn’t the only one to sign the bill, however: Libre,... Continue reading
Posted Jun 30, 2017 at Michael Markarian: Animals & Politics
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With House and Senate Agriculture committee members beginning the elaborate process of assembling the next Farm Bill, we expect another protracted fight in Congress over states’ rights and animal welfare. However, a new bill introduced this week—H.R. 2887 by Rep.... Continue reading
Posted Jun 16, 2017 at Michael Markarian: Animals & Politics
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The White House yesterday released President Trump’s budget for Fiscal Year 2018, providing more detail on the spending proposals for federal agencies than what was forecast earlier this year. One of the most troubling aspects of the package is the... Continue reading
Posted May 24, 2017 at Michael Markarian: Animals & Politics
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Greyhound racing is withering, with more than two dozen tracks closing since 2001 and only 19 dog tracks remaining in just six states. In the last 15 years, the total amount gambled on greyhound racing nationwide has declined by 70... Continue reading
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We are one-third of the way through 2017, and dozens of state legislatures across the country are active, including on animal protection policy issues. The states have always been critical incubators of animal welfare policies, and more often than we’d... Continue reading
Posted Apr 28, 2017 at Michael Markarian: Animals & Politics
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Last night, the Humane Society Legislative Fund and The Humane Society of the United States co-hosted the annual Congressional Humane Awards to honor a bipartisan group of lawmakers who led the way for animals during the last year. Dozens of... Continue reading
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President Trump’s preliminary budget proposes major cuts in programs related to foreign aid, poverty relief programs, and the environment, and the budget proposal eliminates entire programs supporting public broadcasting, the arts, and humanities. From our lane at HSLF, the one... Continue reading
Posted Mar 20, 2017 at Michael Markarian: Animals & Politics
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The original federal law to curb some aspects of animal fighting (adopted in 1976) did not prompt a single prosecution for more than a quarter century, even though dogfighting and cockfighting went on in thousands of dark corners and even... Continue reading
Posted Feb 15, 2017 at Michael Markarian: Animals & Politics
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Following the worrying results of an investigation into the sale of wildlife products from imperiled species within its borders, Maryland lawmakers are taking steps to make sure that their state no longer has a hand in this destructive trade. photo... Continue reading
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There’s a new Congress in town, but it includes many veteran members who are back at work on the Hill, too. We want you to know how those members performed on important animal protection issues in the last session, so... Continue reading
Posted Jan 27, 2017 at Michael Markarian: Animals & Politics
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The cabinet post with perhaps the most relevance for animal welfare within the incoming administration was one of the last to be filled—with former Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue getting the nod from President-elect Donald Trump as the nominee for Secretary... Continue reading
Posted Jan 19, 2017 at Michael Markarian: Animals & Politics
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In the first days of the 115th Congress, lawmakers are poised to take up the so-called Midnight Rules Relief Act and the REINS Act, which both have the potential to undermine Presidential authority and set the stage for the elimination... Continue reading