December 1, 2008
I have serious concerns about the impact legislation like the Equine Cruelty Act would have on agriculture in Wyoming. Livestock owners need to have appropriate options available to them for dealing with their property.
I am concerned that this legislation will lead people to simply abandon unwanted horses since there are no facilities in place to care for these animals. The cost of providing alternatives to slaughter facilities, both financially and environmentally, is tremendous. Crowding too many horses into too small an area would be a worse situation for both the horses and the land. This would lead to more injuries and sickness among the horses and overgrazing could leave the horses without natural feed. Too many horses abandoned to the wild would have a negative impact on range lands that need to be carefully managed. Also, no one has proposed a realistic way to pay the high, long-term costs for providing enough land, feed, or veterinary care for unwanted horses.
This is a fundamental issue of private property rights and horse owners rather than legislators should determine how to best manage their livestock. I will continue to work to enact sensible policies for managing livestock.
I want my constituents to have access to a more complete view of my work in Congress. My website (enzi.senate.gov) is regularly updated with the latest news, from legislation I'm working on in Washington to my activities back home in Wyoming. Stop by the website anytime to stay informed of my work, and to keep in touch with me.
Michael B. Enzi
United States Republican Senator for Wyoming