Voters in Tennessee, Arkansas, and South Carolina made a powerful statement on Tuesday by overwhelmingly voting to include National Rifle Association-backed constitutional amendments to protect America's great, ages-old heritage of hunting and fishing as state constitutional rights.
"The voters have spoken and they have sent a very clear message to anti-hunting groups like the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) and PETA: You and your extremist agendas are not welcome in my state," said NRA-ILA Executive Director Chris Cox. "NRA will continue to lead efforts to pass these amendments across the nation. We must be vigilant because even as we get more sportsmen's groups to join us in the fight, extremists are pouring hundreds of thousands of dollars into anti-hunting campaigns."
Tennessee's Amendment received 90 percent of the vote, followed by South Carolina with 89 percent and Arkansas with 82 percent. The voters in these states appreciate that sportsmen are today's true conservationists, as their license fees and excise taxes paid on equipment fund the vast majority of wildlife and conservation efforts in the country. Both sportsmen and wildlife were undisputed winners on election night.
Right to Hunt and Fish constitutional amendments are a state-by-state priority for the NRA and will continue at a rapid pace, especially with more pro-Second Amendment and pro-hunting legislators being elected around the country. NRA's model Right to Hunt and Fish constitutional language, developed over the past five years, has become the standard from which to negotiate with legislators and game and fish professionals. Thirteen states now have these important constitutional protections: Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Louisiana, Minnesota, Montana, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Vermont, Virginia and Wisconsin.
"Hunting is in America's DNA. Indeed, it is as old as civilization itself," concluded Cox. "NRA has long assumed a leadership role but we must all work together to ensure that every resident in every state is able to rest, knowing that their hunting heritage will be there for future generations."
Established in 1871, the National Rifle Association is America's oldest civil rights and sportsmen's group. More than five million members strong, NRA continues to uphold the Second Amendment and advocates enforcement of existing laws against violent offenders to reduce crime. The Association remains the nation's leader in firearm education and training for law-abiding gun owners, law enforcement and the armed services. Be sure to follow the NRA on Facebook and on Twitter @NRA.