The House of Representatives passed the bill funding the government for Fiscal Year 2014 on Wednesday including language banning the United States Department of Agriculture inspection funding for equine slaughterhouses reported Horsebackmagazine.com.
The bill will now move to the Senate where it is expected to pass and be signed into law by President Obama.
United States Senator Mary Landrieu (D-La.) added the language to the FY2014 Appropriations bill in June. Senator Landrieu stated:
"Slaughtering horses is inhumane, disgusting, and unnecessary, and there is no place for it in the United States."
In a press release by Equine Advocates, a horse rescue and advocacy group from Chatham, N.Y., additional key players were praised for their hard work; among them Victoria McCullough, horsewoman and head of Chesapeake Petroleum, Vice President Joseph Biden, and Florida State Senator Joseph Abruzzo.
"We are grateful to Vice President Joe Biden, along with the support of congressional leaders, for adding the defunding language to the Omnibus bill. Robert Redford also needs to be thanked because he has been actively involved since he first signed the Voter Card for the passage of the California Initiative banning horse slaughter back in 1998. His support through the years has had a tremendous impact on this issue. I know I speak for most Americans when I say that horse slaughter is wrong and has no place in our culture," stated Susan Wagner, Equine Advocates President.
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The Humane Society of the United States president and CEO, Wayne Pacelle stated:
“Americans do not want to see scarce tax dollars used to oversee an inhumane, disreputable horse slaughter industry. We don’t have dog and cat slaughter plants in the U.S. catering to small markets overseas, and we shouldn’t have horse slaughter operations for that purpose, either.”
Congress is now being urged to pass the SAFE Act; Safeguard American Food Exports Act, H.R. 1094 / S. 541, to outlaw horse slaughter operations in the U.S., end the current export of American horses for slaughter abroad, and to protect the public from consuming toxic horse meat.
According to Webpronews, Blair Dunn, attorney for Valley Meat Company in New Mexico fighting to begin the slaughter of American horses in Roswell, stated:
”It is certainly disappointing that Congress is returning to a failed policy at the urging of special interest groups while failing to provide for an alternative.”
For 80% of the American population against horse slaughter however, the news was a welcome sigh of relief.
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