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Friday, March 20, 2009

Knowing the Score in Congress

Just before the November elections, the Humane Society Legislative Fund released a special preview of the 2008 Humane Scorecard. The final copy of the publication is now available, and it charts the progress that we made for animal protection during the 110th Congress, on issues ranging from animal fighting to puppy mills to pet food safety. You can download a copy and read it here.

Capitol I hope you will study the Humane Scorecard and see how your federal lawmakers rated when it came to common-sense animal protection policies. If they received high marks, please be sure to thank them for their support. And if they did poorly, let them know you are watching and want them to do better.

Thirty-nine senators and 109 representatives, representing 42 states and two U.S. territories, scored a perfect 100 percent, led as prime sponsors of animal protection legislation, or did both. We will honor this group of leaders at a special awards ceremony next week on Capitol Hill, and we thank them for going the extra mile to protect animals from cruelty and abuse.

We are already well on our way to making meaningful advances for animals in the 111th Congress, with the long-awaited ban on slaughter of downer cattle now final, and progress on other fronts—so as we look back, we are also looking forward. Let the previous session be a guide, where we started down the path toward passing laws to require labeling of fur-trimmed apparel, ban the trade in pet primates, stop the export of horses for slaughter, and much more.

Please pass on the Humane Scorecard to friends and others who care about animals, and urge them to get involved by writing their lawmakers. And let’s do our best to assure that lawmakers know animal advocates are watching, so that they will strive to do even better as the next scorecard reviews their performance for 2009.

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