By a 76-0 vote, the New Jersey State Assembly passed a bill (A3012) June 26 that would prohibit people from having sex with cats, dogs and other animals. Introduced by Assemblyman Jack Ciattarelli, the legislation now heads to the Senate.
Bestiality is already a crime in 37 other states, according to the Humane Society of the United States. The New Jersey bill was reportedly prompted by the case of a former New Jersey police officer who allegedly molested cows but could not be prosecuted under existing animal cruelty laws.
“The discovery of illegal slaughterhouses in basements, garages and so forth are infrequent but disturbing,” Maher wrote in a memo to House colleagues. “Perhaps more disturbing is the knowledge [that] slaughtering or selling dogs and cats for human consumption is not illegal in Pennsylvania.”
Main Line Animal Rescue, which supports Maher's measure, said several dogs were rescued from a Philadelphia warehouse where they were raised and intended to be slaughtered for their meat.
Maher’s bill would also ban the use of tethered live animals for target practice or cruel entertainment.
"Contests to see who can blow off a paw, shoot off an ear [and] blind and torture animals as sadistic forms of entertainment must be outlawed,” Maher told the rescue group.