Sportsman Groups Push for Sunstein Defeat

Sportsmen Need to "Man the Battle Stations" and Block the "Czar"

By Greg R. Lawson

Battle lines between sportsmen and anti-hunting extremists seem to be hardening with each passing day. Frighteningly, it looks to get worse as a major anti-hunter is on the verge of setting up residence in a federal office with the power to block pro-sportsmen regulations for years to come.

Cass R. Sunstein may not be a household name, but make no mistake, in academic and legal circles he is a rock star. His nomination by President Obama to serve as the head of the powerful Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA), otherwise known as the "Regulatory Czar", appears on track and has received a lot of accolades from those who make a living inside "the Beltway" of Washington, D.C.

Unfortunately, Sunstein's record outs him as a rabid animal rightist who has gone so far as to state that animals may deserve the right to sue and, for sportsmen, most chillingly, that "we might ban hunting altogether, at least if it's sole purpose is human recreation."

While these views may set the hearts of Ivory Towered intellectuals, government bureaucrats, and folks like PETA aflutter; in the real world, they are just plain absurd. However, the very fact that the U.S. Senate is probably going to vote to confirm this person to a post overseeing all federal regulations including those concerning hunting, fishing, and trapping should raise more than a casual shrug. It should raise serious "red flag" by America's sportsmen.

After all, America's sportsmen are the nation's number one conservationists. Yet now, these true conservationists may have to battle an unelected force in order to continue to defend their time honored traditions. Simply put, this is wrong.

The Obama administration is already crowded with people who hold similar viewpoints as Sunstein. It is common knowledge that Attorney General Eric Holder is a champion for gun control. Also with sordid conservation pasts are Department of Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack who vetoed a bill to allow dove hunting when governor of Iowa and Lisa Jackson, head of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, who worked overtime as a New Jersey bureaucrat to stop bear hunting in the state.

And we may soon be adding Cass Sunstein's name to the list of people whose views are well outside the real mainstream of America. It would be tragic to allow these views to be imposed without a fight.

To that end, the U.S. Sportsmen's Alliance has been leading just such a fight to block this nomination and worked with several US senators to stop the nomination from moving forward. Unfortunately, the Senate Majority Leader, Harry Reid (D- NV), is bound and determined to have a vote when the Senate reconvenes after Labor Day.

This means that the clock is ticking. Sportsmen need to "take up their arms" and, using their voices, work hand in hand to block this "Czar." Sportsmen should call both of their U.S. Senators today and express outrage that a man who has explicitly pushed radical animal rights views might be given the power to impose these views on all of us and destroy our collective heritage.

Commentary by Larry S. Moore:

Yesterday, fourteen outdoor groups sent a letter asking that the United States Senate block the nomination of Cass R. Sunstein to head the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs.

Whether you hunt/trap/fish or not, this battle represents the continued erosion of freedoms under the Obama Administration. While Obama did sign the concealed carry in national parks, the same environmental groups that so rabidly supports Sunstein are the same ones who will take away our right to self-defense in our national parks. They ignore the simple fact that the parks are ours also and not the property of the liberal environmental movement.

Gun owners should to help sportsmen fight back this latest threat to our freedoms. The taxes (Pittman-Robertson Excise Tax) that gun owners pay on ammunition - yes, on the lead we send downrange - supports conservation efforts. Gun owners had a huge stake in this fight along with those of us who hunt/fish/trap.

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