Republicans Lead the Way on Ending Taxpayer-Funded Animal Torture
An organization that is fighting to stop wasting tax money on unnecessary painful animal testing has named the top 15 members of Congress that have been the best on the issue in 2017 — and eleven of them are Republicans.
While Republicans are often painted as villians by animal rights organizations such as the Humane Society, a poll conducted by the White Coat Waste Project found that while the majority of Americans across party lines care about ending painful animal testing — right wing voters care 5% more.
White Coat Waste Project is a bipartisan coalition of over 400,000 liberty and animal-lovers who are opposed to the government’s wasteful spending on unnecessary animal experiments. The group does not seek to shut down testing all together, just that which taxpayers are forced to pay for.
White Coat Waste Project announced the recipients of their annual “Congressional Waste Warrior” awards on Friday along with information on how each has been fighting for animals.
Listed among the top spots were Republican Senator Dean Heller who co-sponsored the BEST Practices Act to end wasteful military medical training drills that involve shooting, stabbing and blowing up animals and that the Pentagon reports are “outdated and cost-prohibitive.”
Senator Rand Paul who has successfully secured a federal audit of spending transparency failures exposed by WCW at National Institutes of Health-funded animal laboratories was also a recipient.
Republican representatives David Brat, Brian Mast, Ted Poe, Barbara Comstock, Dan Donovan, Matt Gaetz and Erik Paulsen were all recognized for their work on the bipartisan PUPPERS Act which aims to end painful and wasteful dog experiments at the Department of Veterans Affairs. In July, President Trump’s daughter-in-law Lara Trump met with leaders of the bill to provide her support.
Rep. Brat also lead and passed legislation to defund the VA’s most painful dog experiments and co-sponsored the Federal Accountability in Chemical Testing (FACT) Act to improve oversight of the federal program charged with promoting the use of superior and cost efficient alternatives to wasteful animal tests.
Rep. Mast, in addition to his work introducing the PUPPERS Act, also passed legislation to de-fund the VA’s most painful dog experiments. Additionally, he sent a letter to the VA urging it to adopt out dogs from its labs to veterans.
I’ve been working to end the VA’s practice of conducting painful & unnecessary tests on dogs. I’m grateful to be recognized by @WhiteCoatWaste as a “Waste Warrior,” but I know there is much more we can & must do to protect animals & end wasteful spending. This is just the start! pic.twitter.com/YUOa01cKn9
— Rep. Brian Mast (@RepBrianMast) December 7, 2017
Also honored was Pennsylvania Republican Rep. Charlie Dent, the chairman of the committee that controls VA funding, who helped advance and pass legislation to cut funding for the VA’s painful and wasteful dog experiments.
As I previously reported for Big League Politics, White Coat Waste aims to “STOP taxpayer-funded experiments on dogs, monkeys, cats and other animals, we must stop wasteful government spending. Our approach? Drain the swamp: cut federal spending that hurts animals and Americans.”
On their website, the watchdog group outlines some of the absolutely absurd and needlessly cruel experiments that our government has funded. The disheartening list includes stuffing hamsters with pizza and wine grapes to “increase the commercial value of the grapes and other specialty crops,” spending $10 million to address “lab mouse gender inequality,” and spending $2.9 million to force monkeys to run on treadmills for a quarter-mile a day — for a study which was already also being tested on human volunteers.
The organization’s website states that their goal is to end “wasteful, duplicative, and cruel animal experiments are paid for with taxpayers’ money — and without taxpayers’ approval.” They also note that there is nearly no transparency regarding these programs.
The president and founder of White Coat Waste Project, Anthony Bellotti, is a former Republican political strategist who worked on campaigns to defund Obamacare and Planned Parenthood.
“Uncle Sam forces taxpayers to foot the bill for more than $15 billion a year in wasteful and inhumane animal experiments like addicting monkeys to nicotine, force-feeding abortion herbs to pregnant animals and giving puppies heart attacks, and we’re proud to recognize lawmakers working to eliminate this waste and abuse,” Bellotti told Gateway Pundit.
The organization has the support of the majority of veterans and their families, and their efforts have been endorsed by VetsFirst, The American Military Retirees Association and The Retired Enlisted Association. In a national survey conducted in September by the research firm PulsePoint, 56% of veterans and their immediate family members responded that they support legislation to end painful the painful testing that has not lead to a medical breakthrough in 30 years.
In an op-ed for Fox News, Retired Marine Staff Sgt. Johnny “Joey” Jones, a hero who lost both his legs above the knee after stepping on an IED while clearing a minefield in Afghanistan wrote: “I’m suspicious of researchers at the Department of Veterans Affairs, an organization tasked with caring for me as a combat-disabled veteran, who view dogs merely as disposable furry test tubes, not loyal companions. This is hard for me to understand, because I worked alongside life-saving bomb-sniffing dogs in Iraq and Afghanistan.”
Speaking to Big League Politics last month, Jones, who works with White Coat Waste, stated that “it’s a conservative principled animal rights activist effort. We’re working to get legislation passed that prohibits the government from funding this type of testing (starting with VA) because the private sector has already moved passed it. Rather than attacking the idea of animal testing, we’re saying it a waste of taxpayer money because there have been zero major scientific breakthroughs as a direct result of schedule E testing in 30 years.”