Two years ago, President Bush signed a multi-billion dollar budget that carried with it a provision allowing for unadoptable horses to be sold to slaughter houses for foreign markets.
At the the time wild horse advocate Sherry O'Mahoney was beside herself.
" By the stroke of one man's hand the protection laws were put in. Now by the stroke of another man's hand its taken away, and taken away brutally."
Two years later, a new bill H-R 503 has made its way to Congress..it bans horses from being sold to slaughter houses for human consumption or transporting a horse across the border for the same reason.
Sponsor of the bill Representative Ed Whitfield a Republican from Kentucky says passage would be a real turning point. :" We have an excellent opportunity on thursday September 7th at ending horse slaughter in America."
Those opposed to the bill include cattle association members who argue the horses will be taken to places where the industry is unregulated and humane euthanasia standards won't count.
At the B-L-M Wild Horse Adoption Center horses older than 10-years old can be sold...but according to the federal agency plenty of paperwork is needed for the purchase which hopes to ferret out buyers who intend to make money by selling the horses for slaughter...while its worked in some instances...there have been cases where the horses have ended up at slaughter in the last two years.
BLM Spokeswoman Maxine Shane, sums it up this way."Sometimes people lie and we do our mission still is to find good homes for all these horses."
The B-L-M will take no official position on HR-503 and says it does not sell any wild horses or burros to slaughterhouses or "killer agents."
A check with Nevada's U-S Representatives, Shelly Berkely and Jon Porter are co-sponsors of the bill. Congressman JIm GIbbons says he will vote for it.
Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist says he doens't think the Senate will take up this isue before recessing for November elections.
HR 503 is the only substantive issues the House takes up this week.