Deutch, Buchanan Reintroduce Bill to Criminalize Animal Abuse

Deutch, Buchanan Reintroduce Bill to Criminalize Animal Abuse

The bill has 139 additional original cosponsors.

 Today, Congressman Ted Deutch (FL-22) and Congressman Vern Buchanan (FL-16) reintroduced the "Preventing Animal Cruelty and Torture (PACT) Act" to criminalize certain acts of animal cruelty.

In 2010, Congress passed the Animal Crush Video Prohibition Act, which made the creation and distribution of animal crushing videos illegal. However, the underlying acts of cruelty against animals were not included. The PACT Act closes this loophole by prohibiting certain cases of animal abuse. A fact sheet for the PACT Act can be found here.

Last Congress, the PACT Act (H.R. 1494) received 284 cosponsors. The Senate companion (S.654) passed by unanimous consent.

"This is common sense, bipartisan legislation to bring some compassion to our animal laws," said Congressman Deutch. "For many Americans, animal welfare is an important policy issue, and the idea of animal abuse is abhorrent. By building on state and local laws, Congress should act to guarantee a level of protection for animals across the country by criminalizing these inhumane acts. We've acted in the past to stop the horrific trend of animal abuse videos; now it's time to make the underlying acts of cruelty a crime as well."

“The torture of innocent animals is abhorrent and should be punished to the fullest extent of the law,” Congressman Buchanan said. “Protecting animals from cruelty is a top priority for me and I look forward to working with Congressman Deutch on this important issue.”

“Decades ago the Federal Bureau of Investigation recognized the seriousness of animal cruelty and its link to escalating violence toward humans. All 50 states have felony provisions for animal cruelty and so a parallel federal statute is long overdue to crack down and fill gaps in the law. Representatives Deutch and Buchanan are tremendous advocates for animal protection, and we are grateful to them for seeking to eradicate malicious cruelty” said Sara Amundson, President, Humane Society Legislative Fund.

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