Republican continues crusade against non-existent problem
Washington, DC - Republican, Ed Whitfield of Kentucky continues to pursue redundant legislation to over-regulate the American Walking Horse Industry. His bill named the Prevent All Soring Tactics Act (H.R. 1518/S.1406) would allow the USDA to be the sole inspection entity to evaluate horses for soring* at shows and events after the Walking Horse industry has successfully self regulated to eliminate soring.
Contrary to the claims of the bill's supporters, soring is currently illegal, well regulated, and rare.  It is the opinion of The Cavalry Group, an advocate for animal owners and animal related businesses, that these regulations would only serve to further inhibit well intentioned horse owners from participating in shows, and its over reaching will negatively impact all breeds and disciplines.
Mindy Patterson, president of The Cavalry Group, said the following, "Radical animal rights groups like the Humane Society of the United States have long desired to end horse shows, and other animal based entertainment that they wrongly view as unethical.  Soring is but another thinly veiled, baseless attempt to scare people away from showing their horses with the risk of fines and criminal prosecution. Not only is Congressman Whitfield misinformed, it is no coincidence that Ed Whitfield's wife, Connie Harriman-Whitfield serves as Senior Policy Advisor for the Humane Society Legislative Fund raising the issue that his sponsorship of this bill is a conflict of interest which is driving this effort."
"It is sad that otherwise solid Republicans and rural Democrats who claim to be supportive of agriculture continue to buy into the uninformed, far left wing narratives of these animal rights organizations. The current soring regulation system has been very effective at preventing the practice.  In the age of sequester, more big government intervention is the last thing we need."
*Soring is a method used by unscrupulous horse owners to manipulate the gait of the horse through the use of physical or chemical irritants on the front hooves.  For more data on the rare occurance of soring, please view data information attached.
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