Maria Cantwell on Environment
Democratic Jr Senator (WA)
"NOAA scientists need funding for groundbreaking research into how salmon are adapting to the changing climate and dealing with threats like stormwater pollution here in Washington," said Sen. Cantwell. "Salmon are central to the culture, economy, and marine ecosystems of the Pacific Northwest, and this investment in science will help us make the right choices and help protect salmon for years to come."
This funding will help advance cutting-edge research including salmon life-cycle models, understanding how salmon are adapting to climate change, and studies to better understand the impact of tire-related chemical runoff, stormwater, and other environmental pollutants on salmon survival. This center and its nearly 300 scientists are a key part of restoring Puget Sound.
Cantwell reminded voters, "You know you have to bring people together to get legislation passed." She was one of the chief architects of Washington State's 1990 Growth Management Act, a complex piece of legislation designed to limit urban sprawl and the depletion of natural resources.
Expresses the sense of the Senate that having the President lead the U.S. delegation at the World Summit on Sustainable Development would send a strong signal of U.S. support.
Calls for the United States to: (1) take specified steps at the Summit, such as reaffirming its support for the implementation of commitments entered into at the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED), supporting efforts to improve the institutional structure for implementing the framework created by Agenda 21 and the Rio Declaration on Environment and Development, remaining firmly opposed to commercial whaling, and supporting measures to increase the use of renewable sources of energy worldwide; and (2) provide leadership and pursue the negotiation of international agreements to address global climate change and to protect the marine environment.
Urges the President to identify priority international environmental agreements that the United States has signed during and following the UNCED that the Administration will present to the Senate for ratification.
The League of Conservation Voters (LCV) is the political voice of the national environmental movement and the only organization devoted full-time to shaping a pro-environment Congress and White House. We run tough and effective campaigns to defeat anti-environment candidates, and support those leaders who stand up for a clean, healthy future for America. Through our National Environmental Scorecard and Presidential Report Card we hold Congress and the Administration accountable for their actions on the environment. Through regional offices, we build coalitions, promote grassroots power, and train the next generation of environmental leaders. The 2003 National Environmental Scorecard provides objective, factual information about the environmental voting records of all Members of the first session of the 108th Congress. This Scorecard represents the consensus of experts from 20 respected environmental and conservation organizations who selected the key votes on which Members of Congress should be graded. LCV scores votes on the most important issues of the year, including environmental health and safety protections, resource conservation, and spending for environmental programs. Scores are calculated by dividing the number of pro-environment votes by the total number of votes scored. The votes included in this Scorecard presented Members of Congress with a real choice on protecting the environment and help distinguish which legislators are working for environmental protection. Except in rare circumstances, the Scorecard excludes consensus action on the environment and issues on which no recorded votes occurred.
To: Administrator, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Dear Administrator Leavitt:
We are writing to urge you to take prompt and effective action to clean up mercury pollution from power plants. The EPA’s current proposals on mercury fall far short of what the law requires, and they fail to protect the health of our children and our environment. We ask you to carry out the requirements of the Clean Air Act to protect our nation from toxic mercury contamination.
On January 30, 2004, EPA proposed two alternative rules to address mercury emissions. Unfortunately, both of these proposals fail to meet the Clean Air Act directives for cleaning up mercury. EPA`s proposals permit far more mercury pollution, and for years longer, than the Clean Air Act allows.
The toxicity of mercury has been proven time and again by scientists around the world. The Agency`s own scientists just released a study finding that approximately 630,000 infants were born in the US in the 12-month period, 1999-2000, with blood mercury levels higher than what is considered safe. This is a doubling of previous estimates.
The newest scientific studies show that controlling mercury emissions works. As we saw in Florida, sharp reductions in mercury pollution are mirrored by reductions in nearby fish populations. A study in northern Wisconsin indicated that reductions in the input of mercury from air corresponded with marked reductions in mercury fish tissue levels in the 1990s.
As the Administrator of the EPA, you have the legal authority and the responsibility to address mercury emissions and protect public health. We do not believe that EPA`s current proposals are sufficient or defensible. We urge you to withdraw the entire proposed rule package and re-propose a rule for adequate public comment that meets the terms of the 1998 settlement agreement and is promulgated by the December 15, 2004 deadline.
Amends the Internal Revenue Code to make permanent the tax deduction for charitable contributions by individuals and corporations of real property interests for conservation purposes. Known in the Senate as the Rural Heritage Conservation Extension Act of 2009.
Congressional Summary:Amends the Animal Welfare Act to define a `high volume retail breeder` as a person who, in commerce, for compensation or profit: has an ownership interest in or custody of one or more breeding female dogs; and sells more than 50 of the offspring of such dogs for use as pets in any one-year period. Considers such a breeder of dogs to be a dealer.
Promulgates requirements for the exercise of dogs at facilities owned or operated by high volume retail breeders, including requiring daily access to exercise that allows the dogs to move sufficiently in a way that is not forced, repetitive, or restrictive; and is in an area that is spacious, cleaned at least once a day, free of infestation by pests or vermin, and designed to prevent the dogs from escaping.
Opponent`s Comments (GSDCA, the German Shepherd Dog Club of America):In the past, legislation has excluded home/hobby breeders. This bill would, for the first time, require home/hobby breeders to follow the strict USDA requirements, such as engineering standards designed for large commercial kennels and not homes. Such regulations would exceedingly difficult to meet in a home/residential breeding environment. If passed, PUPS would disastrously reduce purposely-bred pups for the public.
There is nothing in this bill that changes the status of already known substandard kennel violators. There is no increase in funding for additional inspectors, nor is increased inspection evaluation education included.
Dogs purposely bred for showing, trialing or other events often are not bred for several years due to many different reasons. Some of these dogs may never be bred, yet are included in the count.
Working kennels maintain a large dog population while they are evaluating dogs; if the dogs do not work out for the purpose for which they were intended, they are often sold as pets. This could bring those working/training kennels under USDA regulations.
The Great Ape Protection and Cost Savings Act prohibits:
112th Mid-Term Humane Scorecard: The Humane Society Legislative Fund has posted the final version of the 2011 Humane Scorecard, where you can track the performance of your federal lawmakers on key animal protection issues during last year. We rated legislators based on their voting behavior on measures such as agribusiness subsidies, lethal predator control, and the Endangered Species Act; their cosponsorship of priority bills on puppy mills, horse slaughter, animal fighting, and chimps in research; their support for funding the enforcement of animal welfare laws; and their leadership on animal protection. All of the priority bills whose cosponsorships we`re counting enjoy strong bipartisan support; in the House, each of the four now has more than 150 cosponsors.
The Humane Scorecard is not a perfect measuring tool, but creating some reasonable yardstick and allowing citizens to hold lawmakers accountable is central to our work. When the Humane Scorecard comes out each year, it helps clarify how the animal protection movement is doing geographically, by party affiliation, and in other categories. It helps us chart our course for animals by seeing where we have been effective, and where we need to improve.
Proponent`s argument for bill:(by Mission Blue): Recognizing the growing threat posed by foreign illegal fishing, the International Fisheries Stewardship and Enforcement Act would safeguard U.S. ports, strengthen enforcement, and protect American fishing interests. Illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing spans the globe, threatening legitimate fishing operations, undermining sustainable fisheries management, and stealing a vital resource from needy communities and the world economy. Criminal fishing worldwide is estimated to take $10 billion to $23.5 billion worth of seafood annually, or 11 million to 26 million tons of fish--three to six times more fish than the entire U.S. commercial fishing industry catches legally every year.
Library of Congress Summary: This joint resolution nullifies the rule finalized by the Department of the Interior on Aug. 5, 2016, relating to non-subsistence takings of wildlife and public participation and closure procedures on National Wildlife Refuges in Alaska.
Case for voting YES by House Republican Policy Committee: The Fish and Wildlife Service rule--which lays claim to more than 20% of Alaska--violates ANILCA (Alaska National Interest Land Conservation Act) and the Alaska Statehood Compact. Not only does [the existing 2016 rule] undermine Alaska`s ability to manage fish and wildlife upon refuge lands, it fundamentally destroys a cooperative relationship between Alaska and the federal government.
Case for voting NO by the Sierra Club (April 6, 2017):
Sen. CANTWELL. I reintroduce today the Animal Fighting Prohibition Enforcement Act of 2007. This legislation has won the unanimous approval of the Senate several times, but unfortunately has not yet reached the finish line.
There is no doubt, animal fighting is terribly cruel. Dogs and roosters are drugged to make them hyper-aggressive and forced to keep fighting even after suffering severe injuries such as punctured eyes and pierced lungs. It`s all done for `entertainment` and illegal gambling. Some dogfighters steal pets to use as bait for training their dogs, while others allow trained fighting dogs to roam neighborhoods and endanger the public.
The Animal Fighting Prohibition Enforcement Act will strengthen current law by making the interstate transport of animals for the purpose of fighting a felony and increase the punishment to three years of jail time. This is necessary because the current misdemeanor penalty has proven ineffective--considered a `cost of doing business` by those in the animal fighting industry which continues unabated nationwide.
These enterprises depend on interstate commerce, as evidenced by the animal fighting magazines that advertise and promote them. Our bill also makes it a felony to move cockfighting implements in interstate or foreign commerce. These are razor-sharp knives known as `slashers` and ice pick-like gaffs designed exclusively for cockfights and attached to the birds` legs for fighting.
This is long overdue legislation. It`s time to get this felony animal fighting language enacted. It`s time for Congress to strengthen the federal law so that it can provide as a meaningful deterrent against animal fighting. Our legislation does not expand the federal government`s reach into a new area, but simply aims to make current law more effective. It is explicitly limited to interstate and foreign commerce, so it protects states` rights in the two states where cockfighting is still allowed.
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Senate races 2024:
AZ: Kyrsten Sinema(I,incumbent)
CA: Laphonza Butler(D,retiring)
CT: Chris Murphy(D,incumbent)
DE: Tom Carper(D,retiring)
vs.Lisa Blunt Rochester(D)
FL: Rick Scott(R,incumbent)
HI: Mazie Hirono(D,incumbent)
(No opponent yet)
IN: Mike Braun(R,retiring)
MA: Elizabeth Warren(D,incumbent)
MD: Ben Cardin(D,retiring)
ME: Angus King(I,incumbent)
MI: Debbie Stabenow(D,retiring)
MN: Amy Klobuchar(DFL,incumbent)
(No opponent yet)
MO: Josh Hawley(R,incumbent)
MS: Roger Wicker(R,incumbent)
MT: Jon Tester(D,incumbent)
ND: Kevin Cramer(R,incumbent)
NE: Peter Ricketts(R,incumbent,2-year seat)
Deb Fischer(D,incumbent,6-year seat)
(No opponent yet)
NJ: Bob Menendez(D,incumbent)
NM: Martin Heinrich(D,incumbent)
(No opponent yet)
NV: Jacky Rosen(D,incumbent)
vs.Jim Marchant (R)
NY: Kirsten Gillibrand(D,incumbent)
OH: Sherrod Brown(D,incumbent)
PA: Bob Casey(D,incumbent)
RI: Sheldon Whitehouse(D,incumbent)
TN: Marsha Blackburn(R,incumbent)
TX: Ted Cruz(R,incumbent)
UT: Mitt Romney(R,retiring)
VA: Tim Kaine(D,incumbent)
VT: Bernie Sanders(I,incumbent)
WA: Maria Cantwell(D,incumbent)
WI: Tammy Baldwin(D,incumbent)
WV: Joe Manchin III(D,retiring)
WY: John Barrasso(R,incumbent)
Senate Votes (analysis)