Thursday, January 14, 2010

Are Reps. LaTourette, Sutton anti-hunting legislators? (Humane Society's rankings)

Based on criteria used by the rabidly anti-hunting, anti-fishing and anti-trapping Humane Society of the United States, U.S. Rep. Steven LaTourette (Republican) and Rep. Betty Sutton (Democrat) scored well on the organization's legislative scorecard.

LaTourette represents much of Northeast Ohio while Sutton's district includes the Lorain area.

Based on 13 legislative criteria/votes, LaTourette scored a 62 - the highest score awarded to any Republican representative of Ohio's congressional delegation.

LaTourette also received a positive check mark from the Humane Society for "leadership" - a designation presented to representatives who are "a prime sponsor of pro-animal legislation (including items not scored on this chart)," says the Humane Society, an organization that strongly supports legislative and judicial action against hunting, trapping and fishing.

One of LaTourette's negatives - based on the Humane Society's desires anyway - was his vote to allow concealed carry permit holders to pack a weapon while in a national park.

Sutton received the Humane Society's rating of 100 percent. This is the same rating awarded to Democrat Rep. Dennis Kucinich who represents many of Cleveland's West Side communities as well as Democrat Rep. Mary Jo Kilroy whose district includes Columbus and Upper Arlington.

The lowest score awarded to an Ohio congressional member went to Republican Rep. John Boehner whose down-state district includes Middletown and Piqua and also to Republican Rep. Bob Latta whose district includes Bowling Green, Fremont and Norwalk. Each of these two representatives received an 8.

As for the U.S. Senate, Democratic Sen. Sherrod Brown collected an 83 rating from the Humane Society while Republican Sen. George V. Voinovich collected a 0 from the organization. Brown also was heralded as a "leader" by the group.

But even the Humane Society acknowledges the "limitations of judging legislators based on a few votes, cosponsorships, and joint letters."

Such rankings are often subjective in nature.

That being said, such listings are important to various constituent sub-groups and help to distinguish potential votes on subjects of interest and concern to people like gun owners, hunters, anglers and trappers.

- Jeffrey L. Frischkorn

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