The much-watched 2018 elections are finally in the rear-view mirror. The American voters have spoken. Now that the votes have been tallied and the winners have given their victory speeches, what can the country’s hunting community expect?
As has been widely reported, control of the U.S. House of Representatives has switched from Republican to Democrat. The next few months will be spent re-organizing the committees, assigning new chairmen and ranking minority members to various committees.
The House Committee that sees most of the action on hunting issues is the Natural Resources Committee. The Chairman giving up the gavel of that committee is Rob Bishop of Utah. Congressman Bishop has been a strong supporter of hunting rights and of Safari Club International.
The most likely replacement for Chairman of this important committee is Congressman Raul Grijalva of Arizona. Grijalva has served as the ranking minority member of the committee. A polar opposite of Chairman Bishop, Grijalva recently introduced legislation that would severely restrict trophy hunting imports. SCI strongly opposes this bill.
With a margin of at least 23 votes in the U.S. House, (there are still several House races yet to be called) the Democrat majority can push through pretty much any anti-hunting legislation they choose.
Fortunately for America’s hunters and outdoors sportsmen and women, the U.S. Senate has maintained, and in fact, increased, its pro-hunting majority.
The Senate committees overseeing public lands and outdoor recreation issues will continue to be chaired by Senators friendly to hunters.
The pro-hunting continuity in the U.S. Senate is a critical check against the likely onerous legislation coming out of the newly constituted House of Representatives — legislation like Congressman Grijavla’s anti-hunting bill.
Although the U.S. Senate will provide the necessary balance to any anti-hunting measures passed out of the U.S. House of Representatives, America’s hunters must remain vigilant.
SCI will continue to be at the forefront of fighting for hunters’ rights at all levels of government.