First For Hunters Blog

SCI Protects Hunters, Hunting In Court

Oct 30, 2017

Safari Club International continues to fight for hunters in court by filing three legal briefs in two weeks to protect hunting.

Who fights for a policy that protects hunters who accidently shoot a protected wolf thinking it was a coyote?

Who defends the congressional nullification of a harmful U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service regulation (from the previous administration) that usurped Alaska’s management of its wildlife?

Who battles the Center for Biological Diversity’s lawsuit to make the use of lead-based ammunition for hunting a violation of federal solid waste laws?

And who filed a legal brief in each of these cases over the last two weeks?  SCI, of course.

Two of these cases are in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.

In one case, WildEarth Guardians succeeded in setting aside the “McKittrick Policy,” a U.S. Department of Justice policy that discourages prosecution of the rare instances in which a hunter shoots a federally protected Mexican wolf believing the animal is a coyote.  This common-sense policy ensures that only those with criminal intent suffer criminal penalties.

In the other case, SCI and the NRA are defending the dismissal of a lawsuit by CBD that seeks to subject the use of lead-based ammunition for hunting in the Kaibab National Forest in Arizona to liability under the Resources Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA).

RCRA is a solid waste pollution law not intended to regulate hunting.  The district court dismissed the case.  In the court of appeals, SCI/NRA, the National Shooting Sports Foundation and the U.S. Forest Service have presented numerous arguments why the court should dismiss this back-handed attempt to ban lead-based ammunition in the Kaibab and elsewhere.

In the final case, brought in district court in Alaska, CBD is trying to reverse Congress and the President’s decision to nullify an Obama-administration rule that prohibited certain hunting methods, allowed by Alaska, on National Wildlife Refuges.

Desperate to reinstate this harmful rule, CBD concocted meritless constitutional challenges.  SCI, again joined by the NRA, jumped in to defend against this attack on the constitutionality of the Congressional Review Act and on the State of Alaska’s right to regulate hunting of its native wildlife.

The current Administration is defending the case, along with the Pacific Legal Foundation and other groups.

SCI separately is challenging similar Obama-administration regulations restricting hunting on National Parks and on the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge in Alaska.  That case is also in the district court in Alaska.

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