Decision Maker

Chris Murphy

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Petitioning Florida State Senate, Florida State House, Marco Rubio, Bill Nelson, Thad Altman, Rick Scott, Alabama State House, Alabama State Senate, Arkansas State Senate, Arkansas State House, John McCain, Ar...

Outlaw hog vs. dog hunting/fighting in the wild

Goal: To outlaw the cruel and inhumane practice of using dogs to hunt wild boar in Florida, as well as in the 31 others states it's currently legal.  Florida (as well as other states) has a wild boar problem. Hogs are numerous, omnivorous and have no natural predators, making them one of the largest nuisance pests in the state. There are many humane options for dealing with the pigs, which do not need to involve brutally killing the pigs or putting domesticated dogs in harm’s way. However, despite the existence of alternatives, Florida and other states have exempted the use of  "bait-dogs" in boar hunting. This practice is incredibly dangerous and very inhumane for the dogs and boars involved. Each of the 32 states that allow this practice laws differ, but Florida animal cruelty statutes states:  FLORIDA ANIMALS: CRUELTY; SALES; ANIMAL ENTERPRISE PROTECTION: http://www.leg.state.fl.us/statutes/index.cfm?App_mode=Display_Statute&Search_String=&URL=0800-0899/0828/Sections/0828.122.html 828.122 Fighting or baiting animals; offenses; penalties.—(1) This act may be cited as “The Animal Fighting Act.”(2) As used in this section, the term:(a) “Animal fighting” means fighting between roosters or other birds or between dogs, bears, or other animals.(b) “Baiting” means to attack with violence, to provoke, or to harass an animal with one or more animals for the purpose of training an animal for, or to cause an animal to engage in, fights with or among other animals. In addition, “baiting” means the use of live animals in the training of racing greyhounds.(c) “Person” means every natural person, firm, copartnership, association, or corporation.(3) Any person who knowingly commits any of the following acts commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084:Baiting, breeding, training, transporting, selling, owning, possessing, or using any wild or domestic animal for the purpose of animal fighting or baiting; (9) This section shall not apply to:.....(e) Any person using dogs to hunt wild hogs or to retrieve domestic hogs pursuant to customary hunting or agricultural practices." The exception (e) makes NO logical sense, because dogs are trained to "hunt" by chasing, cornering, attacking and fighting. So, why is it illegal to cause a dog to fight another dog, or a pig in an enclosure, but it is legal to use dogs to chase and viciously attack pigs while being trained and in the wild? Boar hunting with dogs is exactly what it sounds like: dogs trained to track and attack. They are taken out into the country, or wherever wild hogs are plentiful, and set loose to sniff out hogs. Once a hog is found the dogs will chase it down, corner, bay and attack it, usually leaving it badly injured, but normally still alive. Hunters (when they catch up) will kill the pig, usually by "sticking," which is a prolonged death vs. the use of a proper gun. Wild hogs are incredibly difficult to kill and will put up a fight until the end. Many dogs involved are wounded by tusks, bitten, trampled and sometimes killed. This is basically animal fighting, in the wild. Putting dogs in such a dangerous situation is inhumane and should not be legal. PETITION LETTER: Wild boars are a major problem in Florida and in other states. The species has no natural predators, is omnivorous and repopulates very quickly: it is because of these traits that wild boars are a force hard to reckon with. There are many control methods used, some of them very inhumane. Currently it is legal for dogs to be used in wild hog hunting: this is extremely dangerous for the dogs involved and leads to inappropriate practices elsewhere. Dogs involved in hunting are likely to be seriously injured by the hogs. Dogs get trampled, bitten, pierced by tusks and may be infected with diseases that pigs carry. The hogs are frightened, outnumbered and suffer a painful death.  I urge you to propose a ban on hunting wild pigs with dogs in order to put a stop to these inappropriate behaviors. Please consider other methods of wild pig population control, such as designating land for hogs to be displaced to, and controlling breeding of the species. Allowing dogs to hunt them is inhumane and unnecessary. Sincerely, [Your Name Here]  

Fara D
76,058 supporters
Victory
Petitioning U.S. Senate, Bernie Sanders, Charles Schumer, Cory Booker, Kirsten Gillibrand, Dick Durbin, Patty Murray, Richard Blumenthal, Maria Cantwell, Ben Cardin, Tom Carper, Robert Casey, Christopher Coons...

We demand that The United States Senate not confirm Jeff Sessions as Attorney General

As the nation’s chief law enforcement officer, the Attorney General of the United States must be independent of politics and respect the dignity of all Americans. The Attorney General has a duty to enforce the rule of law fairly and pursue equal justice under the law. One of the core functions of the Department of Justice is to protect Americans’ civil rights, and to defend those who have been denied them. Another key function of the Department of Justice is to protect our security, but never sacrifice our civil liberties. Not only has Senator Sessions been a staunch opponent of reforming the tragic shortcomings in our criminal justice system, he holds a number of views that are inconsistent with how most Americans believe justice should be applied under our Constitution.

The Righteous Opposition
40,398 supporters
Victory
Petitioning Barbara Mikulski

We Demand that the U. S. Senate not confirm Andrew Puzder as Secretary of Labor

Andrew Puzder is among Trump's more controversial Cabinet picks because he has publicly opposed the overtime rule and various other Department of Labor regulations, and because the fast-food industry, from which Puzder hails, is a top wage-theft enforcement target at the department. Puzder is CEO of CKE Restaurants, which includes Carl’s Jr. and Hardee's. It’s actually very hard to imagine a worse choice for Labor Secretary than Andy Puzder. The Labor Secretary’s job is to look out for American workers. Trump's Labor nominee has opposed increasing the federal minimum wage from $7.25 an hour to $10.10 an hour and efforts to expand eligibility for overtime pay.   It would be kind of funny if it wasn’t so serious. During the election, Trump made a lot of promises to create good jobs. But he’s filling his cabinet with CEOs and right-wing billionaires who have spent their lives undermining working people’s rights to come together in unions, while fighting minimum wage increases, paid sick leave and family leave policies. The evidence clearly demonstrates that protecting the rights of the people who work at Puzder’s company or its franchisees doesn't seem to be his priority. Puzder has run a business model that has produced widespread labor abuses at the companies. According to data compiled by Bloomberg BNA, over the previous seven years, about 60 percent of all Labor Department investigations of Carl's Jr. Restaurants found violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act. While working people at his fast food chains sometimes were making below minimum wage, Puzder was taking big compensation packages. In 2012, he made 291 times as much as workers at his restaurants. Now, he could be in charge of enforcing our nation’s labor laws—from ensuring workplace safety to investigating wage theft.  His companies had the fourth highest incidents of wage theft reported to the government.  ‘Wage theft is a rampant, everyday problem in the fast-food industry: Nearly nine out of 10 fast-food workers across the country report having money stolen from their paychecks by their boss,’ Kendall Fells, the Fight for $15 national organizing director, told Bloomberg BNA via e-mail. Bloomberg reported. “Fells referred to a 2014 poll commissioned by the campaign of more than 1,000 fast-food workers nationwide. The survey documented such common worker complaints as being forced to perform tasks before clocking in or after clocking out, having the cost of uniforms deducted from their paychecks, and not receiving breaks during long shifts.”  Puzder’s Carl’s Jr. restaurant chain also has a history of sexist television. He thinks it’s appropriate to peddle sex to kids if it sells the product. “We believe in putting hot models in our commercials, because ugly ones don’t sell burgers,” said the CEO in a 2011 press release, according to Fortune. “We target hungry guys, and we get young kids that want to be young hungry guys.” Let’s target Puzder’s nomination instead. Just Say No Puzder at Labor. This petition will be delivered to the full Senate and to the Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee of the U.S. Senate

TRO Political Action Network Truth. Resistance. Opposition.
37,635 supporters
Petitioning Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, Aaron Ford, Barbara Bailey, Tina Orwall, Patty Murray, Barbara Boxer, Dick Durbin, Sherrod Brown, Sheldon Whitehouse, Richard Blumenthal, Tammy Baldwin, Chris Murp...

Protect the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program

The Department of Education is proposing eliminating the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program. The stated purpose of the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program is to “encourage individuals to enter and continue to work full-time in public service jobs”. To qualify for PSLF forgiveness, people must not only work full-time in a public service position, but also make 10 years’ worth of full, on-time, income-based monthly payments toward their Federal student loans. Who receives PSLF forgiveness? Teachers, Government Employees, Non-Profit 501(c)(3) Employees, Police Officers, Fire Fighters, Park Rangers, Military Personnel, and other qualifying public service workers. 400,000 Americans have chosen to serve their Government and Communities over the past 10 years, and each of these Americans should be able to count on the PSLF benefits promised to them. Betsy DeVos’s Department of Education seeks to end PSLF without having conducted a detailed study to determine how much actual money this dramatic policy reversal and broken promise would even save. The plan to eliminate PSLF is an not only an insult, but also an outrage to everyone who has dedicated the past ten years of their lives working in public service positions. Ending the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program is a terrible idea that should be opposed at all costs. We ask that Members of Congress block the Department of Education’s proposal to kill this vital financial assistance program.

Tim Lavelle
26,578 supporters
Victory
Petitioning The President of the United States

Save Doug and Alex's Marriage, and Stop Deporting Our Spouses!

  On July 13th 2011 in San Francisco, Alex Benshimol and Doug Gentry, a married California couple, will face every same-sex binational couple’s worst nightmare: a deportation hearing. As anyone following this issue knows, for years there has been little hope for same-sex binational couples seeking to reside together in the US. Many are legally married like Alex and Doug, but are still treated as legal strangers in the eyes of our own government. For many years, and certainly since DOMA became law, our families have been discriminated against.  At best, our foreign partners and spouses have managed to stay in the US with temporary visas related to work or study, but are deprived of access to a “green card” on the basis of their relationship. These couples cannot build a future together and live with tremendous insecurity. Far more often we are forced to live apart in different countries; exiled to one of the more than 20 countries in the world that respect our families; or forced to live in the United States in the shadows with constant uncertainty; fear of deportation and ruin hanging over our heads. This destroys marriages, and tears apart our families. It is a humanitarian crisis that must come to an end. Alex came into the U.S. 12 years ago from Venezuela and overstayed a tourist visa, an immigration violation that straight binational couples can easily remedy once married; as a gay married couple, Alex and Doug do not have that option. We believe the political will of our elected leaders must be directed at this issue so that DOMA is repealed quickly. All American citizens deserve the right to pursue life and happiness with the liberty and equality guaranteed us all by our Constitution. We need our elected officials to show leadership and resolve on this issue. The Obama administration has the power to protect couples like Alex and Doug so they are not torn apart by deportation.  Join us in declaring that the cruel discrimination that has been inflicted on us by unjust laws MUST finally come to an end. Please join Out4Immigration, Stop the Deportations, GetEQUAL, Marriage Equality USA, and your fellow citizens in urging President Obama and Homeland Security Secretary Napolitano to take action to recognize Doug and Alex’s marriage and prevent another family from being torn apart!  

Out4Immigration
12,054 supporters
Closed
Petitioning Casey Steinau, Ian Olson, Kim Metcalfe, Darryl Sinkfield, Janet May, Nancy Worley

All Superdelegates - Vote Bernie

We, the undersigned constituents, write to you today to discuss how crucial your vote is to the future of our great country. I write to you today not only as a proud lifelong Democrat, but as someone who is deeply concerned about the upcoming election this November. Along with your colleagues, you are in an extremely powerful and special position for shaping our country's path forward. You have the power to help solidify the strongest candidate for our party to stop Donald Trump from damaging our country beyond repair. The party failed to prevent the loses of the '72 McGovern and '80 Carter elections. We can't make that same mistake in 2016, this time against an even more harmful and destructive Trump. That's the whole reason why you have your super delegate vote: to help prevent the party from choosing a poor General Election candidate that cannot guarantee a Democratic election. We have to do everything we can to make sure our Democratic candidate has the best odds to beat Trump. Senator Sanders has brought many people into the process (more than Obama did in 2008)(1), but many of those same people won't support Secretary Clinton. In fact, a petition that supported the 'Bernie or Bust' notion,  with over 100,000 signatures, was delivered to the White House recently. If we are to acknowledge the scientifically proven exit-voice theory, research suggests that it’s very likely more than 2.4 million people share the same sentiments (2) .In addition, hundreds of thousands of constituents feel disenfranchised due to abundant and documented voter restriction and election fraud (mass voter roll call purging, massive decrease in polling location, unused provisional ballots, misguided voting instructions, altering of ballots, broken voting machines, and a consistent trend of exit polling not matching election outcomes) (3)(4)(5)(6). Never mind the notion that hundreds of super delegates pledged their support for Clinton even before this election season, or the fact that documents were leaked proving that the DNC had already chosen Clinton as the nominee back in May 2015, on the same day that Sen. Sanders announced his candidacy (7).  We also run the risk of Secretary Clinton's potential legal issues costing us precious votes at the worst time possible. That is made clear by her own testimony regarding her misuse of her private email server; her statements to the public completely contradicted the FBI's testimony. It is also important to note that there is another petition that was delivered to the White House that voices the "Never Hillary" pledge., which was signed by over 200,000 people. There is also resounding concern over the issue of 'big money' in politics, including the issue of super PACs and the Hillary Victory Fund (8). The general consensus of average citizens is that she cannot be trusted.  The National polls are clear. The swing state polls are clear (9). The favor-ability ratings are clear. The momentum, energy, youth and Independent enthusiasm are all clear. Our best hope in defeating Trump is clear: Senator Sanders (10)(11). You have a unique opportunity to go down in history as one of the special few individuals who made the right judgment call and helped us elect the stronger candidate for the Democrats to retain the White House. You also have the opportunity to disregard all logic, polls, and the anti-establishment pulse of the country and stay with a riskier candidate and further the notion of a #DemExit. For the sake of the Democratic Party, for the sake of your place in history, and for the sake of unifying the entire country and not having to say "President Trump"... please vote for Senator Sanders in the convention this July. Thank you for your time and consideration. References: (1) http://www.vox.com/2016/6/2/11818320/bernie-sanders-barack-obama-2008 (2) https://johnlaurits.com/2016/07/10/mathematical-proof-that-you-are-not-alone/ (3)http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/only-voter-suppression-can-stop-bernie-sanders_b_9780128 (4) https://electionfraud2016.wordpress.com/ (5) https://www.facebook.com/groups/1649941911932852/permalink/1655874224672954/ (6) http://usuncut.com/news/arizona-polling-disaster/ (7) https://guccifer2.wordpress.com/2016/06/15/dnc/ (8) http://www.counterpunch.org/2016/04/01/how-hillary-clinton-bought-the-loyalty-of-33-state-democratic-parties/ - who resourced the FEC (9) http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/donald-trump-dead-heat-hillary-clinton-swing-state/story?id=40542377 (10) http://www.huffingtonpost.com/h-a-goodman/hillary-clinton-now-loses_b_10102664.html (11) http://elections.huffingtonpost.com/pollster/2016-general-election-trump-vs-sanders    

Jamie Ferrier
5,552 supporters
Petitioning Nancy Wyman

Legalize Recreational Marijuana in CT

Medically, Marijuana is one of the most useful medicines in the world. Recreational legalization would not only boost CT's economy, but create a more peaceful environment.  Latest Recreational Marijuana news states,  "HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — Should Connecticut follow Colorado’s lead and legalize marijuana for recreational purposes? Some form of that idea is gaining traction in many state legislatures around the country, including Hartford. There are now two bills before the Connecticut General Assembly aimed at legalizing marijuana for recreational use.   “I think these laws are just hypocritical, and it’s destroyed generations of young people in the inner cities,” said Rep. Edwin Vargas, D-Hartford. The Governor’s big criminal justice plan would decriminalize the possession of most drugs, changing it from a felony to a misdemeanor, but several members of the legislature think the state should go much further where marijuana is concerned. “I’d like to see Connecticut align itself with Colorado and just lift all statutes that criminalize the use of marijuana,” said Vargas."  "Another state lawmaker says since the state already legalized the distribution and sale of marijuana for medical purposes, this should be the next logical step. “We already have the mechanism in place,” said Rep. Juan Candelaria, D-New Haven. “We do it for medicinal purposes. We have the mechanism. Why not continue with recreational?” Candelaria’s idea would impose a hefty 15-percent tax on marijuana, which he says could be a big help with the state’s current red ink problems.   “You know that we’re facing a fiscal crisis right now, and I think this is a venue to generate enough revenue to close the budget deficit that we’re facing,” said Candelaria. Both Representatives Vargas and Candelaria also say that this would put a big dent in the marijuana street drug trade. The idea is expected to be on the ballot in Massachusetts and Maine later this year."

Jason Kohl
5,355 supporters
Petitioning Connecticut State Senate, Connecticut State House, Connecticut Governor, Richard Blumenthal, Chris Murphy, Joe Courtney, Dannel Malloy

Legalize Recreational Use Of Marijuana In CT

Let's honestly get straight to the point, the state of Connecticut is going into an insane deficit like there hasn't been in a long time, a bit over a BILLION dollars, I'm proposing that the state legalizes the recreational use of Marijuana in the state, thus establishing dispensaries and "Coffee Shops" where adults 21 Years of age and older can go and safely and responsibly purchase or consume Cannabis in any form, the revenues from the taxes alone would help a lot not to mention tourists bringing in more money to the state, traveling here just to recreationally use Marijuana. Everything has to obviously be set up correctly and executed properly but this is a start to fixing this state's financial crisis! 

Fernando Cintron Jr.
5,231 supporters
Petitioning U.S. Senate, U.S. House of Representatives, President of the United States, Donald Trump, John Cornyn, Thad Cochran, Mitch McConnell, Paul Ryan, Richard Shelby, Lamar Alexander, Susan Collins, Lisa...

#SAVEH2B: Save Small & Seasonal Businesses!

PLEASE ASK CONGRESS TO #SAVEH2B AND SUPPORT IMMEDIATE CAP RELIEF!  American Small and Seasonal businesses are currently approaching their busiest season of the year and they will not be receiving their seasonal guest workers. Without these legal, temporary employees American businesses and workers are in jeaprody.  The H-2B Visa nonimmigrant program allows employers to hire foreign workers to come to the United States and perform temporary nonagricultural services or labor on a one-time, seasonal, peakload or intermittent basis. H-2B workers are not considered immigrants. In order to qualify for an H-2B Visa, an employer must prove that there are not sufficient U.S. Workers who are capable of performing temporary services or labor. MYTH: H-2B WORKERS TAKE JOBS AWAY FROM AMERICANS.FACT: American workers are guaranteed first chance at every job later filled by an H-2B temporary laborer. By law, every open position must be properly advertised in the community and requires employers to hire any able and willing American workers to fill open positions. The fact is that H-2B temporary workers actually support American jobs and the U.S. economy. The H-2B program provides an opportunity for seasonal businesses to operate at a greater capacity, thereby retaining their full-time American workers and contributing more to their local economies. Additionally, temporary foreign seasonal workers help support many upstream and downstream jobs. According to the American Enterprise Institute study on Immigration and American Jobs, every H-2B worker creates or sustains 4.64 American jobs on average. MYTH: EMPLOYERS DON’T EVEN TRY TO HIRE AMERICAN WORKERS TO FILL THESE TEMPORARY HARD LABOR JOBS.FACT: Employers work extremely hard to hire American workers because 1) it is dramatically cheaper to do so, and 2) the law requires that employers demonstrate that every effort has been made to hire Americans before they can start the process of trying to hire a temporary foreign laborer. Again, the fact is that the vast majority of American workers are not interested in temporary seasonal manual labor jobs. Geography is a big obstacle for many employers; for example, many resort communities don’t have a sufficient local labor pool. And, in many cases, these types of seasonal jobs may not be appropriate for high school students due to the hours or labor laws that prohibit the use of heavy machinery by minors. MYTH: PAYING HIGHER WAGES WILL ENTICE AMERICAN WORKERS AND SOLVE THE SEASONAL TEMPORARY LABOR SHORTAGE.FACT: Hourly pay for these types of jobs have gone up significantly over the last few years because employers who use the H-2B program are required to pay their H-2B workers and similarly employed American workers a premiumwage dictated by the U.S. Department of Labor. These temporary manual labor jobs often pay considerably more than the minimum wage, but American workers still won’t take the positions. Sadly, in many cases, employers who obey the law and use the H-2B program are often competing against businesses that choose to illegally hire undocumented immigrants and pay those workers considerably less. If wages were raised even higher, seasonal employers who use the program would not be able to sustain their businesses or their American workers. MYTH: THE H-2B PROGRAM REPRESSES WAGES FOR AMERICAN WORKERS BY PROVIDING A CHEAPER LABOR SOURCE.FACT: Hiring H-2B workers is a much move expensive and risky option. In addition to the fact employers are required to pay H-2B workers and similarly employed American workers a premium wage that is often well above the federal minimum wage, complying with the H-2B program is extremely costly, complicated and wrought with uncertainty due to an overly restrictive cap and a constantly changing regulatory environment. Employers turn to the H-2B program as a last resort, after extensive efforts to recruit American workers. MYTH: H-2B WORKERS OVERSTAY THEIR VISAS AND EXACERBATE ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION IN AMERICA.FACT: According the U.S. Department of Homeland Security visa overstay in the H-2B program are rare. Workers who do overstay their visas are barred from using the program ever again. The fact is that the vast majority of H-2B workers and their employers are meticulous about compliance. Not following the strict program rules means the end of a well-paying seasonal jobs that allows these workers to provide for their families and still maintain their homes in their native countries – a risk these workers are not willing to take since they generally return to the same employer year after year. Additionally, when approving H-2B visas, the U.S. Consulate confirms workers’ ties to their home countries. Further, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security requires employers to promptly report any H-2B workers who do not report for work or who complete their work earlier in the season than anticipated. MYTH: THE H-2B RETURNING WORKER EXEMPTION IS UNNECESSARY.FACT: The H-2B program’s annual 66,000 cap (33,000 for each half of the fiscal year) is not adequate to meet the demands of a growing economy. The cap for the first half of the fiscal 2017 was reached on January 10. The second-half cap was reached on March 13, leaving many seasonal employers shut out of the program with no access to legal seasonal laborers. Without the returning worker exemption passed by Congress with bipartisan support and signed into law by the President, many companies will have to close their businesses, lay off American workers or turn away customers.This provision is essential to the survival of small and seasonal businesses across the country and should be made permanent. An H-2B returning worker exemption is a narrow solution to a seasonal workforce shortage that focuses on workers who are valuable to their seasonal employers and who have never violated the terms of their past visas or other U.S. laws. These workers do not pose a security risk and they are not taking away jobs from Americans. For more information please visit: https://www.SaveH2b.orghttps://www.h2bworkforcecoalition.com https://youtu.be/UTYVEirlu3o   To contribute further, please contact your Congressmen/women and tweet using the hashtag: #SAVEH2B

SAVE H-2B
4,347 supporters
Closed
Petitioning Eric Holder

Bring home deported US Veteran, Arnold Giammarco

Arnold Giammarco is a US Veteran and lifelong legal permanent resident who was deported to Italy in November 2012.  He struggled with addiction and beat the odds, turning his life around for his wife and little girl, from whom he has been separated for the past two and a half years.  We have reopened this petition after the Yale School of Law chose to represent Arnold and try to bring him home.  They recognized the injustice, and we are asking for your support to show our state and federal government that we recognize it too.  Please sign this petition and share with friends and family. Visit www.freearnold.com to read his story. Thank you.

Sharon Giammarco
3,951 supporters