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Serving: IN

Humane Society of the United States Rates Lawmakers

Here's a group that fears no one.

Their spokesperson on a local radio call-in show on WIBC out of Indianapolis might be a soft-spoken, middle-aged, lady-next-door type, claiming she only cares about protecting animals, but their track record continues to say otherwise. The Humane Society of the United States recently went so far as to rate lawmakers at the federal level on how friendly they were to animal welfare-type legislation.

The WIBC interview was prompted by the Puppy Mill Bill considered before the Indiana legislature this session. Things were going against HSUS and its demand for a strong, yet vague bill when the interview took place.

Although HSUS openly campaigned for a vague, strong bill, a tactic that university experts have documented they use over and over again to try to get their foot in the door in a new state, the large radio station and its mid-afternoon host were somehow sucked into their web. And so was a writer who wrote an editorial in the Indianapolis Star. Both the editorial and comments by the radio announcer blasted legislators and others, which would include farm groups, for insinuating that the real purpose behind HSUS and its support of the puppy mill bill was ultimately to work toward elimination of animal agriculture in the United States. Yet anyone who looks at their Website or sees their magazine shouldn't have a hard time making the small leap from seeing the group as a radical, animal-supporting group to one that would go so far as to work toward the elimination of meat production in the U.S.

This latest report just strengthens what many say about HSUS. While they may try to project a soft, kind image on the home fronts across America, they play hard ball in the Halls of Congress, and in legislative halls all around the country. This time they've rated lawmakers in Congress. Not surprisingly, Democrats scored higher than Republicans on their 'Humane Scorecard.' Seven Democrat senators and 22 Democrat Congressmen received a 100+ rating, meaning they were sponsors of pro-animal legislation that became law. Included on that list are Vice-President Joe Biden, John Kerry and Carl Levin.

Only two Republican Senators earned that score, Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins, both of Maine. Lawmakers also got good marks from the HSUS scoring system if they voted to increase funding for legislation already on the books that was meant to enforce animal-welfare laws already on the books.

Meanwhile, a very-watered down version of the puppy mill bill in Indiana, with much clearer language that protects many legitimate breeders, appears headed to the Governor's desk. Don't expect many Indiana legislators to be on the HSUS 100+ rating list if the group decides to rate state lawmakers.

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