Results of 2010 State Ballot Initiatives for Animals

Here is a look at state ballot initiatives that appeared on the ballot this November 2 and the results: 

Missouri’s Prop B – Voters said yes to Prop B which will limit the number of breeding dogs that commercial dog breeders can hold and require humane standards in commercial dog breeding operations. For more on this…..

Arizona’s Hunting and Fishing Amendment, Prop 109 or HCR 2008 – Voters said no to this initiative referred by the legislature and sponsored by state Rep. Jerry Weiers. It sounded harmless enough, claiming to amend the state constitution to protect the "right to hunt, fish and harvest wildlife lawfully". Actually, the amendment would have gone much further. 

Arizona citizens would not have been allowed to use the ballot initiative process to regulate hunting and fishing or protect wildlife. The politicians in the state legislature, not the state wildlife commission or citizens, would have had "exclusive" authority over wildlife issues. But even the legislature’s authority would have been limited. Check out this scary language on the ballot:

"No law shall be enacted and no rule shall be adopted that unreasonably restricts hunting, fishing and harvesting wildlife or the use of traditional means and methods. Laws and rules authorized under this section shall have the purpose of wildlife conservation and management and preserving the future of hunting and fishing.  …Lawful public hunting and fishing shall be a preferred means of managing and controlling wildlife". 

This proposed amendment would have taken power away from citizens to decide wildlife issues and undermine sound scientific management of wildlife by the state commission. Politicians in the legislature would actually have been required to pass laws to promote hunting and fishing as the "preferred" means of managing wildlife. Even the legislature could not really have restricted inhumane methods of hunting or fishing and take steps to preserve eco-systems through management based on sound science. The special interests like National Rifle Association and hunting organizations would have written into the Arizona constitution a mandate to promote their interests in hunting and fishing at will. For more information, visit

Arkansas’ Hunting Rights Amendment, Issue 1 – Voters overwhelmingly approved this measure. This legislatively-referred measure, was sponsored by state Sen. Steve Faris, and amends the state constitution by adding this:   

Section 1. (a)(1) Citizens of the state of Arkansas have a right to hunt, fish, trap, and harvest wildlife.

(2) The right to hunt, fish, trap, and harvest wildlife shall be subject only to regulations that promote sound wildlife conservation and management and are consistent with Amendment 35 of the Arkansas Constitution.

(b) Public hunting, fishing, and trapping shall be a preferred means of managing and controlling nonthreatened species and citizens may use traditional methods for harvesting wildlife.

Art. 35 of the Arkansas Constitution creates the state Game and Fish Commission and invests exclusive authority over wildlife in the Commission. The commission will now be required to allow hunting and fishing as the "preferred" means of managing wildlife. So much for science. Also, the commission must allow "traditional" hunting methods which will make it impossible to require humane treatment of animals.

North Dakota’s Fenced Hunting Ban, Measure 2 – Voters rejected this measure by a margin of 56.5% to 43.5%. This measure would have criminalized canned hunts, the so-called "hunting" of "privately-owned big game species or exotic mammals confined in or released from any man-made enclosure designed to prevent escape". For more on canned hunts….and on laws related to canned hunts in other states…..

South Carolina’s Hunting and Fishing Amendment, Amendment 1 – Voters overwhelmingly approved this measure. This Amendment is now added to the state’s constitution:

The traditions of hunting and fishing are valuable parts of the state’s heritage, important for conservation, and a protected means of managing nonthreatened wildlife. The citizens of this State have the right to hunt, fish, and harvest wildlife traditionally pursued, subject to laws and regulations promoting sound wildlife conservation and management as prescribed by the General Assembly. …"

Why is killing animals a "right" as opposed to any other activity? Why not promote conservation and appreciation of wildlife as a "right" of all citizens? Who besides the NRA and hunting organizations actually believes hunting and fishing are "important for conservation"? South Carolina is actually placing in its constitution what is nothing more than an advertisement for hunting and fishing, a political statement on behalf of special interests, the NRA and its cohorts.  

Tennessee’s Hunting Rights Amendment – This measure passed overwhelmingly. This measure, sponsored by state Sen. Doug Jackson,  amends the state constitution to add this to Art. XI, Sec. 13:

The citizens of this state shall have the personal right to hunt and fish, subject to reasonable regulations and restrictions prescribed by law. The recognition of this right does not abrogate any private or public property rights, nor does it limit the state’s power to regulate commercial activity. Traditional manners and means may be used to take non-threatened species.

Again, nothing more than a political advertisement for hunting and fishing and a show of support for special interests like the NRA.

3 thoughts on “Results of 2010 State Ballot Initiatives for Animals”

  1. This really IS scary. In my opinion the NRA has FAR too much power and seems to be getting ever stronger. I do NOT like it.

  2. Why do these people think that hunting is needed to “manage” wildlife? Wildlife has been managing itself long before humans arrived. When people try to manage wildlife the results are usually disastrous. What people need to do is learn to manage their own negative impact which causes all the problems in the first place.

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