At President Obama's invitation, Rep. Elton Gallegly (R-CA) stood with him as the President signed Gallegly's bill to outlaw animal crush videos at a White House ceremony today.
Crush videos graphically depict the abuse and killing of animals. In 1999, President Clinton signed into law a Gallegly bill to outlaw the videos and for 10 years the industry disappeared. However, the U.S. Supreme Court overturned the law earlier this year and videos reappeared on the market.
Gallegly's new law, the Prevention of Interstate Commerce in Animal Crush Videos Act of 2010, will prevent video depictions of drowning, impaling, burning and crushing of animals. After careful restructuring, both House members and senators believe Gallegly's new bill addresses the U.S. Supreme Court's constitutional concerns.
The House passed Gallegly's bill by an overwhelming bipartisan vote of 416-3 in July and the Senate passed it by unanimous consent last month.
"Violence is not a First Amendment issue; it is a law enforcement issue," Gallegly said. "While the torture of defenseless animals is in itself despicable, numerous studies also show cruelty to animals is often the first step leading to violence against people. This law is one step toward ending this cycle of violence."