Missouri Republicans are flocking to a call to fight socialism at all costs, even if it means killing a few puppies.


Republican State Senator Bill Stouffer filed legislation to repeal a bill aimed at curbing cruel and inhumane treatment of dogs by breeders last week.

The Missouri Dog Breeding Regulation Initiative, Proposition B, known as the "Puppy Mill Cruelty Prevention Act," requires large-scale dog-breeders to provide basic food and water, adequate shelter, necessary veterinary care, adequate space, regular exercise, and adequate rest between breeding cycles to dogs under their care. The bill also prevents breeders from owning more than 50 breeding dogs.

Those who violate the new laws, which take effect beginning in 2011, face up to 15 days in jail and a $300 fine.

Proposition B was approved by voters during the November elections, despite being opposed by tea party groups and other conservative organizations.

The Eagle Forum described the Puppy Mill Act as a "hoax," saying "we oppose any ballot initiative or legislation in Missouri that would impose unnecessary and unreasonable regulations for our farmers."

In addition, the Missouri Tea Party and the Tea Party Patriots advertised a meeting called "Vote NO on Proposition B" on their websites in October, TalkingPointsMemo reported.

"It does nothing to solve the problem of dog abuse," Stouffer told the Associated Press. "It only targets licensed dealers, and people that are ignoring the law now are not affected by this."

Missouri is considered the "puppy mill capital" of the nation. The US Humane Society estimates that nearly one million puppies a year are produced by the 200,000 breeding dogs in the state.

Data from Missouri's Department of Agriculture, released by Freedom of Information Act request, showed that the nation's largest commercial dog-breeder, Hunte Corporation, disposed of 50 to 100 dead dogs a month.

Comedy Central's The Daily Show mocked Republican opposition to the bill in a mid-November segment

"Proposition B is very similar to Obamacare," Anita Andrews from Alliance for Truth told Daily Show correspondent Olivia Munn. "They're expecting all the breeders to sit there and pay for exorbitant amount of care that is not needed, like adequate food,adequate water, adequate space."

"Proposition B is one more step to making us a communist, socialist society," Andrews added.

The website for Alliance for Truth, which was formed to oppose the Puppy Mill Act, is now inactive.

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