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New TV Ad Exposes Steve King’s Voting Record as Out of Step with Iowa Delegation and Law Enforcement

25 Sheriffs and Police Departments in Iowa’s Fourth District Support Bill to Ban Bringing Children to Dogfights, Which King Opposes

WASHINGTON (Oct. 19, 2012) -- The Humane Society Legislative Fund, the nation’s leading political advocacy group for animal welfare, has launched its fourth TV ad in the Des Moines, Sioux City and Rochester/Mason City media markets opposing Steve King’s reelection to Congress. The new ad includes video footage of dogfighting, and tells voters that King’s opposition to a bill that would ban bringing children to dogfights is out of step with other members of Iowa’s congressional delegation and law enforcement groups.

The narrator tells viewers: “Dogfighting, it’s cruel, vicious—so why would Steve King vote against a ban on bringing children to dogfights? Twenty-five sheriffs and police departments in the Fourth District support the ban. Democrats and Republicans, including Chuck Grassley and Tom Latham, came together to support the ban. Just not King. He’s the only Iowa lawmaker to oppose the federal ban on bringing children to dogfights. Steve King—too extreme for Iowa.”

King has led the fight in Congress to block legislation to crack down on the barbaric practices of dogfighting and cockfighting, and he has a history of opposing other efforts to crack down on animal fighting and other forms of animal cruelty. During consideration of the 2012 Farm Bill, King led an unsuccessful effort to defeat an amendment to make it a crime for an adult to attend or to bring a child to a dogfight or cockfight. Despite King’s efforts, the amendment passed by a vote of 26-19.

Other Republican members of Iowa’s congressional delegation support the legislation: Rep. Tom Latham is a co-sponsor of H.R. 2492, the Animal Fighting Spectator Prohibition Act, which the Farm Bill amendment was based on, and Sen. Chuck Grassley voted in favor of a similar Farm Bill amendment which passed the U.S. Senate by a vote of 88-11.

Additionally, 25 law enforcement agencies in Iowa’s 4th Congressional District have endorsed H.R. 2492/S. 1947, the Animal Fighting Spectator Prohibition Act, to crack down on violence and criminal activity. Nationwide, the bill has been endorsed by the Fraternal Order of Police, the International Association of Chiefs of Police, the Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association, and more than 280 law enforcement agencies. A three-year study by the Chicago Police Department found that 70 percent of animal offenders had also been arrested for other felonies, including domestic and aggravated battery, illegal drug trafficking, and sex crimes.

“Steve King is out of step with Iowa values, with members of his own caucus, and with men and women of law enforcement who are working to protect our communities from violence and criminal activity,” said Dane Waters, political director for the Humane Society Legislative Fund. “King stands virtually alone in opposing this anti-crime and anti-cruelty legislation, and his colleagues know that if our nation is to root out dogfighting and cockfighting, we need to have strong laws to combat it.”

Media contact: Heather Sullivan, (240) 477-2251, hsullivan@hslf.org

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HSLF is a nonpartisan organization that evaluates candidates based only on a single criterion: where they stand on animal welfare. HSLF does not judge candidates based on party affiliation or any other issue.

The Humane Society Legislative Fund is a social welfare organization incorporated under section 501(c)(4) of the Internal Revenue Code and formed in 2004 as a separate lobbying affiliate of The Humane Society of the United States. The HSLF works to pass animal protection laws at the state and federal level, to educate the public about animal protection issues, and to support humane candidates for office. Visit us on all our channels: on the web at hslf.org, on our blog at animalsandpolitics.com, on Facebook at facebook.com/humanelegislation and on Twitter at twitter.com/HSLegFund.

Paid for by Humane Society Legislative Fund and not authorized by any candidate or candidate’s committee. HSLF, 2100 L Street NW, Suite 310, Washington, D.C., 20037.