Oklahoma governor 'inclined' to sign horse slaughter bill, aide says

The Oklahoma Senate is expected to take up House Bill 1999 on Tuesday. If no amendments are added, the bill would go to the governor for her consideration. HB1999 would allow horse slaughter but would continue the existing ban on the sale of horse meat for consumption in the state.
BY MICHAEL MCNUTT mmcnutt@opubco.com Published: March 25, 2013
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Gov. Mary Fallin is likely to sign a bill that would allow horse slaughter in Oklahoma if the Senate passes it in its present form, a spokesman said Monday.

The Senate is expected to act on House Bill 1999 on Tuesday.

If the measure passes without any changes, it would go to the governor's office. The House of Representatives last month passed it 82-14.

“The horse slaughter bill is still a moving target and can be amended,” said Alex Weintz, Fallin's communications director. “If it comes to Governor Fallin's desk in the form that we expect it to, she would be inclined to sign it. She would of course only do so after reviewing it carefully with her legal and policy staff.”

Senate Pro Tem Brian Bingman, R-Sapulpa, said he expects HB 1999 to pass the Senate. The bill would allow horse slaughter but would continue the existing ban on the sale of horse meat for consumption in the state.

Sens. Al McAffrey, D-Oklahoma City, and Randy Bass, D-Lawton, have filed amendments to the bill. Getting them approved may be difficult in the Senate, where Republicans have a 36-12 advantage.

The governor's office has thousands of calls and letters on the issue, Weintz said.

“While it is true a majority of those calls are against horse slaughter, the vast majority are coming from out of state and being driven by organized interest groups that do not originate in Oklahoma,” he said.

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