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Will The Senate Let The Sportsmen's Act Die?

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December 04, 2012

Will The Senate Let The Sportsmen's Act Die?

By Bob Marshall

The Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership today sent out a bulletin titled “Time Is Running Out for the Sportsmen’s Act.”

Here's another bulletin I'd suggest for sportsmen and others who care about fish and wildlife habitat: “Time Should Be Running Out For Senators Who Put Political Revenge Over Sportsman's Interests.”
 
There's no other way to report this. Last week the most important fish and wildlife conservation measure of the year - and many previous years - was torpedoed by GOP Senators who previously had supported The Sportsman's Act because of a heated debate with Democrats on an unrelated issue – proposed changes in the Senate filibuster rules.
 
Since then, sportsmen's groups have been working overtime--with both parties--trying to pull the bill through a minefield of parliamentary rules, competing demands, and a deadline barreling forward.
 
As of late Tuesday, the outlook was still grim. Here's how things stood, according to sources working on the issues and who asked to remain anonymous because of the sensitive nature of the negotiations:
 
- Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.), who fired the torpedoes that started this crisis, was satisfied with changes that would solve his professed concern about the increased cost of the duck stamp. Unfortunately, that fix would seriously weaken a change in the Sod Saver provision of the Farm Bill.
 
- Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) still objects to features of the bill which reaffirms authority given to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service decades ago in the Pittman-Robertson Act to determine the impact of lead ammunition and fishing tackle on the health of fish and wildlife. Boxer and others think this is a change, moving that critical public safety charge over a very toxic substance from the Environmental Protection Agency. She has been unmoved by arguments from the bill's supporters.
 
- Senate President Harry Reid (D-Nev.), a supporter of the bill, is being asked by the bill's proponents to untie the parliamentary knot by using his authority to waive the rules and bring the bill to the floor for a vote—in which it would easily pass--or move the bill by attaching it to another piece of legislation.
 
Sportsmen's groups continue to believe pressure from rank-and-file hunters and anglers is the key to saving the day. That's because every hour that passes without a solution lengthens the already long odds that the bill can be moved to--and through--the House in time before the sessions ends.
 
"I can tell you a lot of the senators who voted for Sessions’ objections are regretting it now," said one veteran lobbyist. "We need sportsmen to keep that pressure on, because we're just about out of time."
 
Hunters and anglers can find out who their senators are and how to contact them at www.contactingthecongress.org.

Comments (10)

Top Rated
All Comments
from Gsquare wrote 1 year 19 weeks ago

Sounds like the problem is a dem, one of Mr. Marshall's buddies. Why don't you call boxer and get it fixed instead of blaming it all on the republicans.
The reid takeover of the senate rules on fillibusters is enough to stop the whole govt if that's what it takes. If the senate could pass any legislation on a majority vote, then the treaty to put our gun control in the hands of the un would have already happened. Then the sportsman bill would be of little concequence.

-8 Good Comment? | | Report
from rock rat wrote 1 year 19 weeks ago

Well I had fun working my way down your list the other day, only called fiver or six maybe I'll call a half dozen more just for yucks. I'm polite, and even friendly, and I hope a little amusing, but I do ask why they voted against hunting, shooting, guns, and the NRA. Those staffers from offices in the deep south have never had anyone call and ask those kinds of questions before. They often are at a loss on what to say.

What irks me is that on the NRA blog "Hunters Rights" I didn't see anything to suggest how blatant a thumb in the eye this was and how lockstep Republicans were about voting down this bill.

It's an NRA bill! And they won't even say who messed them over.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from jryoung wrote 1 year 19 weeks ago

Gsquare - the problem is the 35 republicans that flipped their vote at the last minute, Boxer was an outlier from the start and her vote never mattered.

Rock Rat - the NRA finally gave a little lipservice on their Facebook page on Saturday...but the comments behind it were way off topic and I'm not hopeful many picked up the phone.

Reid needs to be the focus of the calls now as he can get it on the calendar. The votes are there, but it need to be scheduled.

+5 Good Comment? | | Report
from Davidd wrote 1 year 19 weeks ago

With the looming fiscal cliff I have a feeling everything will be pushed aside. I will contact my local reps. to nicely voice my point of view.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from labrador12 wrote 1 year 19 weeks ago

I notice that Mr Marshall gives a link to contacting the Congress. Is that because he assumes that his readers at F&S are low information voters too intellectually challenged to know who their Senators are?

-5 Good Comment? | | Report
from Chris Link wrote 1 year 19 weeks ago

Lets also not forget that souther republicans are trying to block the lesser praie chicken from being listed as threatened under the ESA. "Pro sportsman" indeed.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from curmudge1 wrote 1 year 19 weeks ago

Lots of political shenanigans going on (I want to use stronger language ...)

My state's (NJ) two senators, both Dems, voted against this bill earlier, when there were 80 or so votes for it. But they switched and voted for the procedural override the other day, when all the Republicans voted against.

I wonder if the Dems aren't trying to set up the Republicans by creating a precedent of ignoring/bypassing the Budget Act?

Just a stinking shame that all this political posturing is getting in the way.

I'll be watching to see what the NJ vote is on the final up or down, to see how they truly vote.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from RealGoodMan wrote 1 year 19 weeks ago

Labrador,

Give me a friggin' break. That link has less to do with getting the names of your representatives than it does making it easier for people to contact them.

Is the link helpful? Yes. Type in your zip code and take a look for yourself.

And you know what, providing that link couldn't be any more relevant because obviously sportsmen have NOT been holding their reps accountable as we should be for their anti-conservation voting records.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from Mike Diehl wrote 1 year 19 weeks ago

Labbie is kind of like these undertone pop-up ads on the F&S website that keep insistently repeating the same annoying baloney.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from FirstBubba wrote 1 year 19 weeks ago

The political "posturing" is emanating from 1600 Pennsylvania Ave!
Let's ditch the clown and move forward!

-3 Good Comment? | | Report

Post a Comment

from jryoung wrote 1 year 19 weeks ago

Gsquare - the problem is the 35 republicans that flipped their vote at the last minute, Boxer was an outlier from the start and her vote never mattered.

Rock Rat - the NRA finally gave a little lipservice on their Facebook page on Saturday...but the comments behind it were way off topic and I'm not hopeful many picked up the phone.

Reid needs to be the focus of the calls now as he can get it on the calendar. The votes are there, but it need to be scheduled.

+5 Good Comment? | | Report
from rock rat wrote 1 year 19 weeks ago

Well I had fun working my way down your list the other day, only called fiver or six maybe I'll call a half dozen more just for yucks. I'm polite, and even friendly, and I hope a little amusing, but I do ask why they voted against hunting, shooting, guns, and the NRA. Those staffers from offices in the deep south have never had anyone call and ask those kinds of questions before. They often are at a loss on what to say.

What irks me is that on the NRA blog "Hunters Rights" I didn't see anything to suggest how blatant a thumb in the eye this was and how lockstep Republicans were about voting down this bill.

It's an NRA bill! And they won't even say who messed them over.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from RealGoodMan wrote 1 year 19 weeks ago

Labrador,

Give me a friggin' break. That link has less to do with getting the names of your representatives than it does making it easier for people to contact them.

Is the link helpful? Yes. Type in your zip code and take a look for yourself.

And you know what, providing that link couldn't be any more relevant because obviously sportsmen have NOT been holding their reps accountable as we should be for their anti-conservation voting records.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from Davidd wrote 1 year 19 weeks ago

With the looming fiscal cliff I have a feeling everything will be pushed aside. I will contact my local reps. to nicely voice my point of view.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Chris Link wrote 1 year 19 weeks ago

Lets also not forget that souther republicans are trying to block the lesser praie chicken from being listed as threatened under the ESA. "Pro sportsman" indeed.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Mike Diehl wrote 1 year 19 weeks ago

Labbie is kind of like these undertone pop-up ads on the F&S website that keep insistently repeating the same annoying baloney.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from curmudge1 wrote 1 year 19 weeks ago

Lots of political shenanigans going on (I want to use stronger language ...)

My state's (NJ) two senators, both Dems, voted against this bill earlier, when there were 80 or so votes for it. But they switched and voted for the procedural override the other day, when all the Republicans voted against.

I wonder if the Dems aren't trying to set up the Republicans by creating a precedent of ignoring/bypassing the Budget Act?

Just a stinking shame that all this political posturing is getting in the way.

I'll be watching to see what the NJ vote is on the final up or down, to see how they truly vote.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from FirstBubba wrote 1 year 19 weeks ago

The political "posturing" is emanating from 1600 Pennsylvania Ave!
Let's ditch the clown and move forward!

-3 Good Comment? | | Report
from labrador12 wrote 1 year 19 weeks ago

I notice that Mr Marshall gives a link to contacting the Congress. Is that because he assumes that his readers at F&S are low information voters too intellectually challenged to know who their Senators are?

-5 Good Comment? | | Report
from Gsquare wrote 1 year 19 weeks ago

Sounds like the problem is a dem, one of Mr. Marshall's buddies. Why don't you call boxer and get it fixed instead of blaming it all on the republicans.
The reid takeover of the senate rules on fillibusters is enough to stop the whole govt if that's what it takes. If the senate could pass any legislation on a majority vote, then the treaty to put our gun control in the hands of the un would have already happened. Then the sportsman bill would be of little concequence.

-8 Good Comment? | | Report

Post a Comment

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