Amendment 13 backer calls claim that dog racing ban could threaten hunting 'outrageous, false' - Florida Politics

Amendment 13 backer calls claim that dog racing ban could threaten hunting ‘outrageous, false’

A backer of the Nov. 6 ballot issue to ban greyhound racing in Florida called an opponent’s statement outrageous, false, and fully-refuted by the Florida Supreme Court after the NRA Political Victory Fund circulated a warning Tuesday that Amendment 13 could one day threaten hunting and fishing rights.

Carey Theil, senior advisor for the Yes on 13 campaign, was replying Tuesday to the alert put out by Marion Hammer, past president of the NRA and executive director of the United Sportsmen of Florida. Her alert to members charged that the amendment’s language declaring “the humane treatment of animals is a fundamental value of the people of the State of Florida” could lead “extreme animal rights organizations” to “immediately begin work to ban all hunting and fishing.”

“Those groups even claim that animals shouldn’t be owned as pets because it’s inhumane. In short, Amendment 13 is not really about greyhound racing, it’s a front for much more,” Hammer wrote in her alert to the USF and NRA members and friends mailing list. The alert was then circulated Tuesday by opponents of Amendment 13.

Theil responded that the claims are outrageous, fear-mongering, and false, that the amendment is entirely and exclusively about greyhound racing, and that the Florida Supreme Court has agreed with that after hearing similar assertions in court hearings and filings challenging the amendment this summer.

He said claims such as Hammer’s contention that hunting and fishing were at risk were explicitly refuted earlier this month in the Florida Supreme Court decision to allow Amendment 13 on the ballot, when the court wrote that amendment value provisions such as the one she cited have no force of law.  “Amendment 13’s fundamental value provision is devoid of any legislative or judicial mandate: it bestows no rights, imposes no duties, and does not empower the Legislature to take any action,” the court wrote.

“It’s now clear that opponents of Amendment 13 are incapable of debating the merits of commercial dog racing. In recent days, they have started to circulate a series of falsehoods,” Theil said in a written response.

Jack Corey, spokesman for opponents of Amendment 13, notably the spokesperson for the Florida Greyhound Association, replied that the Supreme Court decision is only the opinion of the current court. He asserted it could be changed after a new court, with new members, takes office.

Corey also said he welcomed support from the NRA or “any organization in the state of Florida.” He also charged that the amendment was being pushed by out-of-state political action committees, largely connected with the Massachusetts group GREY2K USA, for which Theil also serves as executive director.

Amendment 13 backers have made the same charge about the Amendment 13 opponents’ Committee to Support Greyhounds, contending that its chair lives in Texas and its treasurer in North Carolina.

Amendment 13, placed on the ballot by the 2017-’18 Constitution Revision Commission, would outlaw the racing of dogs and wagering on such races. Amendments need at least 60 percent approval to be added to the state constitution.

Corey added that he considered the Supreme Court’s statement to be moot, considering he expects the question to lose in the Nov. 6 ballot.

The proposal also would allow other gambling at tracks, such as card games, to continue even after dog racing ends.

If approved, the amendment takes effect immediately but allows greyhound racing to continue through the end of the year 2020.

In Florida, live dog racing is still conducted at 12 tracks.

Scott Powers is an Orlando-based political journalist with 30+ years’ experience, mostly at newspapers such as the Orlando Sentinel and the Columbus Dispatch. He covers local, state and federal politics and space news across much of Central Florida. His career earned numerous journalism awards for stories ranging from the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster to presidential elections to misplaced nuclear waste. He and his wife Connie have three grown children. Besides them, he’s into mystery and suspense books and movies, rock, blues, basketball, baseball, writing unpublished novels, and being amused. Email him at scott@floridapolitics.com.

50 Comments

  1. Pretty sure we all know Amendment 13 is about ending dog racing.
    Folks are concerned that if THIS made it on the ballot and has the possibility of making it into Florida’s Constitution then there is a real possibility that their sport, hobby could be the next target.
    Can you blame them?

    1. This amendment is all about greyhound racing and nothing else. There’s no reasonable way to connect Amendment 13 and any other activity.

      1. Yes – which means it can also be used to end amateur dog sports such as lure coursing, which have nothing to do with professional dog racing.

        There’s more to this than meets the eye. Why enact a constitutional amendment for one dog activity?

      2. Says the guy who represents a group known far and wide for lying, has a proven liar as president, in bed with racketeers, implicated in blackmail, and aligned with terrorist organization Animal Liberation front

      3. I cannot agree. this amendment is written in a very tricky way. It will ban LIVE dog racing. Simulcast will still be allowed. if it gets placed on the Florida constitution it opens a whole can of worms that extremist animal rights groups will use as leverage for their agenda to end animal entertainment. It is slippery for sure. I suggest you read the full amendment carefully.

      4. If it was only about greyhound racing why doesn’t the amendment limit it to just greyhounds instead of adding “or other dogs”.

    2. Totally agree. It’s not just Grey2K backing the amendment… The National Humane Society and PETA. If they get results from Florida voters they’ll definitely target horse racing, dog hunting, and any other working/sport animal in the state. That includes show dogs as well

  2. Will Carey Theil — and the national animal rights extremist organizations which fund his anti-racing organizations — guarantee that none of them will ever seek to have hunting or fishing banned by law ? Will they guarantee that they will never seek to have the use of dogs in hunting banned ? Will they guarantee that they will never seek to have other dog sports, such as amateur racing, coursing, lure coursing, or agility, legally banned.

    Let’s hear it, Carey — now is the time for you and your animal rights extremist masters to repudiate, for all time, any attempt by you or them to have the above sports banned by law.
    If you and they won’t make that guarantee, then the NRA’s prediction is entirely appropriate.

    “It’s now clear that opponents of Amendment 13 are incapable of debating the merits of ‘commercial dog racing’ ” you say ? Carey, I’ve challenged you and several other members of your cabal, multiple times, to an open and public debate on the merits of professional Greyhound racing, yet you’ve all declined the challenge each time. I reiterate the challenge again, here and now. Who is it that’s really “incapable” of debating ? Perhaps only the one who runs from the debate challenge.

    John Parker
    Greyhound Adopters for Racing
    http://www.greyhoundadopters4racing.com

    1. John, GREY2K USA Worldwide is, and always has been, focused on ending commercial greyhound racing. I don’t think we can make that any more clear.

      1. Except that – as stated IN the court case, this fight is funded and partnered by HSUS. Who want to ban and outlaw hunting.

      2. And yet, you wrote an amendment that spells the end for amateur dog sports in the state of Florida, too.

        If that were your only aim, you’d have managed to do it through a bill introduced in the usual manner.

        But you don’t have enough support for that so instead you’re seeking a constitutional amendment – for one dog sport only? Hoping that the less informed voter in Florida will carry the day, based on inflammatory language?

    2. Dogs shouldn’t be exploited for any reason #1 greyhound racing!!! All the other exploitation is also disgusting!! Let them live peaceful lives in nice homes , stop destroying greyhounds and trying to keep a dying disgusting sport alive , it died decades ago!

      1. Peaceful? You realize that dogs get injured as pets, some horrifically and with fatalities? Are you OK with banning pet dogs since they get hurt all the time?

        1. Cat Miller:

          Have you been to a track? Have you ever been around greyhounds let alone adopt one? Or are you to busy drinking the koolaid that is being given out by grey2k?

          Will you be taking in about 8,000 greyhounds into your home and taking care of their meals, cleaning up their poop, taking them to the vet if and when they need to go.

          Will you be hiring any of the trainers, lead outs, etc., that could possibly lose their jobs if this passes?

          This group will not help the greyhounds if this amendment passes. They’ll leave Florida and not care one way or the other about what happens to the greyhounds.

          Do some research on the breed & on the amendment before believing the lies that the anti racing groups want tell you.

      2. So you DO seek to ban amateur activities enjoyed by owners and their pets!

        This makes the point – they are not “just” interested in banning professional greyhound racing – after all, the moment that happens, their organization and the millions of dollars it raises becomes obsolete.

        Pass this amendment, and they will just move on to a new target.

      3. I cannot agree with you. Quite frankly your position is just that – a position.

        in the name of freedom – who are YOU to decide the fate of an entire community of dog loving people what they can and can not do with their lives and animals? My dog LOVED being a racing dog!!! He got hurt racing an now lives with me… and FYI his injury is the same one my neighbor’s dog recently had happen chasing a squirrel in his yard. There was absolutely no abuse involved.

        This amendment is dangerous – in its ability to set a precedent for further loss of freedom in other animal related activities.

  3. Carey,

    Debating the merits of greyhound racing is what you keep saying you want and John Parker keeps accepting the challenge. So far all you have done is either not answered him or when he accepted your challenge on G2K’s FB page you deleted his challenge and banned him.

    Why?

    just say you don’t want to debate John Parker because you can’t allow the truth to come out and John will stop answering your challenge.

    You throw down the gauntlet so your followers think you know what you are talking about, but when the challenge is accepted you never accept and have your followers wondering what you have to hide.

    It is the truth you have to hide and in a real debate you can’t control the truth from coming out. You have no control over the media in a live debate and you always have to control the media when you don’t have the truth on your side.

  4. Mr. Parker has challenged you, Carey, and called you out to debate several times, but for some reason you always disappear and issue no response and go into hiding. Hiding? it’s what you and the FAKE Dog protectors do best. So why wont you debate Parker? maybe you could give Jim Rosica a list of reasons why you continue to hide from debate in the issues?

  5. “Amendment 13, placed on the ballot by the 2017-’18 Constitution Revision Commission, would outlaw the racing of dogs “.. all racing of dogs will be banned.. think AKC flyball.. agility, lure coursing all be be illegal because it says DOGS not greyhounds.. do not be fooled by the GREY2K animal rights people.. they want the extinction of all dogs.. in the meantime they want to “resuce” them and sell them.. but don’t want anyone else to..

    1. The Ballot title is: ENDS DOG RACING.
      The Summary says: Phases out commercial dog racing in connection with wagering by 2020. Other gaming activities are not affected.

      The activities you mentioned are not “commercial dog racing” and have thus far not involved wagering. The second sentence of the summary makes it clear that those activities will not be affected.

      1. Read the Amendment – NOT the “summary.” The Amendment targets the “racing of dogs.”

        Lure coursing, Flyball, Agility – any number of amateur sports enjoyed by owners and their pets becomes the target of this amendment.

        Using the right words matters – and these aren’t the right words.

      2. Precisely! No other activities will be affected!! This would clear the way for for them to have free standing casinos coming soon to a neighborhood near you!
        It was written for the casinos they can quit January 1, 2019 with no after thought of the thousands of families and thousands greyhounds that can be jobless and homeless with no safety net and actuallyit protects the casino interests by holding them harmless and no repercussions against their license. All of this can be done within less than 60 days of the passage!!! PHASE OUT MY ASS!!!

    2. Al Smith you are an absolute lunatic! “They want the extinction of all dogs”?!?!!- spewing ridiculous statements like that are great for the Yes on 13 campaign- How? Easy! you have just proven PR’s are nuts, only care about the dollars they get back from abusing, neglecting, over breeding and over racing greyhounds!!! YES ON 13 to end dog racing…for the safety and appreciation of our beloved greyhounds

      1. Except you didn’t do your homework as usual, Yes on 13. Look at who is funding and backing 13. Wake up, child. And your propaganda regurgitation is tired.

      2. Just out of curiosity, but where is your proof that greyhounds are neglected & abused?

        I’ve visited tracks in Florida and not once did I witness any form of abuse or neglect that your claiming is happening.

        IF this passes, and that is a big IF, I hope you help the people with finding new jobs and taking in 8,000 greyhounds into your home and taking care of them by footing the massive food and vet bills along with picking up poop from 8,000 greyhounds.

  6. Actually, Mr. Parker has also been stating that this amendment is about greyhound racing, and only that. Appreciate your honesty there, John, although it makes your comment here a bit… odd.

    At any rate, John used the phrase “chicken littles” to refer to all of the people who are panicking about their non-parimutuel dog activities, including hunting. His words. But, maybe the sky really is falling, because this one time, and probably only time, we are in agreement!

    #YesOn13

    1. this coming from a group that tried to kick service dogs out of a public event . Kelly is nothing but a sheep following the fools she supports, lying and deceit is what Grey2k is known for yet people that cant see thru the BS support them, they say suckers are born every minute and Kelly seems to be one of them

  7. Ah yes, Kelly, one can always count on Trickeration Nation for a good misquote. What I have said is that the Florida Supreme Court ruled that Amendment 13 applies only to dog racing that is connected to wagering. What the Supreme Court DID NOT say is that you animal rights extremists won’t in the future try to use the “humane treatment of animals” prefatory language in Amendment 13 to further advance your extreme animal rights agenda, and hunting has in fact been in the cross-hairs of the animal rights crowd for decades. So the NRA is entirely appropriate in alerting its members to what the animal rights extremists that financially support your anti-racing cabal could try to do with the Amendment 13 language if it passes.
    Since Carey Theil as usual isn’t showing his presence here but is letting you and Eric carry the water for him, same question to the two of you: Do you and your national animal rights extremist masters guarantee NRA members and dog sport enthusiasts that none of you will ever seek to have legally banned hunting, hunting with dogs and amateur dog sports like amateur racing, coursing, lure coursing or agility ?
    It’s really a simple question. Either you’ll make that guarantee, or you won’t. If, as Eric says, that GREY2K is “focused (whatever that means) on ending commercial greyhound racing,” then it should be easy enough to state, here and now, that none of you will ever seek to have the aforementioned activities legally banned. For example, I as a Greyhound adoption volunteer have no hesitancy to say than neither I nor the Greyhound adoption community will ever seek to have horse racing legally banned, since we have nothing to do with horse racing. If you won’t make that guarantee, but just use the dodge of what you’re currently “focused” on, then NRA members, hunters and dog sport enthusiasts have every reason to be concerned what trickeration you all might use next with the prefatory language of Amendment 13.
    Now, how about that debate ? Anyone ? Anyone ? Bueller ?

    John Parker
    Greyhound Adopters for Racing
    http://www.greyhoundadopters4racing.com

    1. Mr Parker, you can’t seriously believe any guarantee from any of the crooks would mean anything, after, HSUS are convicted RACKETEERS, grey2k has a proven liar as president, has been implicated in blackmail, and has a sister organization that are terrorists, animal liberation front. Not only that, now we learn Dorchak’ got her start with PETA, these people are criminals, simple as that.

  8. The wording is vague enough (“dogs” instead of “greyhound”) that even those that do want to end greyhound racing should VOTE NO if they have dogs they want to do fun things with. This bill is undoubtedly at risk for being a Trojan Horse with implications that cannot be seen now.

    Don’t forget the judge that called it outright TRICKERATION!

  9. And the judge was overruled by the Florida Supreme Court. The only “trickeration” is coming from you John Parker. Ending the cruelties of greyhound racing has nothing to do with the NRA or hunting. You’re losing it fella ….

    1. The NRA apparently begs to differ, Sherry. You antis couldn’t help yourself and persuaded your paid politicians on the CRC to put the “humane treatment of animals” language in Amendment 13 because that made the Amendment “poll”better and so you thought that would pick up more “yes” votes among that particularly gullible segment of the electorate to which you appeal most. Well, surprise, surprise, surprise — you antis got hoisted on your own petard. The prefatory language gives the NRA and its hunting members more than adequate reason to be concerned that your national animal rights extremist masters may decide to attempt to parlay that “fundamental value” language into a legal ban on hunting. So, to be ever vigilant in the protection of hunting rights, the United Sportsmen of Florida and the NRA have come out against the Amendment. If ya’ll had left that language out of the Amendment, the NRA would likely have never taken a position on it. But, you got greedy, had to go for those extra gullibility votes with the “humane” language, and, well, as the old saying goes, “hogs get slaughtered.”
      Sometimes, less is more. But thanks for ignoring that and going for broke in the Amendment language. It has garnered Greyhound racing a powerful and well-funded ally. We who support Greyhound racing will see your HSUS, and raise you an NRA.

      Many thanks,
      John Parker
      Greyhound Adopters for Racing
      http://www.greyhoundadopters4 racing. com

  10. Then is the amendment and I quote ( have no force of law. “Amendment 13’s fundamental value provision is devoid of any legislative or judicial mandate: it bestows no rights, imposes no duties, and does not empower the Legislature to take any action,” the court wrote.) basically no teeth to have it enforced then there is no reason to even allow it on the ballot. So might as well vote no on it since it does nothing and cant be enforced. Also without it having stated in it that is can NOT be used against fishing and hunting I will not be voting for it. Some aspects of it are vague and could be twisted to be used against other things. We have seen to many things passed that are so poorly worded that have been used for things that they said they would use it for in the past. So until they word it It must be exactly specific for its use for example only for US for dog and horse racing only and that hunting and fishing and other things that have nothing to do with racing are stated exempt I will NEVER vote yes.

  11. Amendment 13 should not be on the constitution in the first place. The Floridians will be stuck with the cleanup of the horrific mess this will bring. Everyone knows the greyhounds are being used so casino gaming can expand. The animal extremists want you to believe all greyhounds are mistreated and it’s a dying sport. Lies, Lies. I am a responsible greyhound trainer and this breed is like no other because of their care. As far as a dying sport, it is thriving on the internet; where most businesses have seen their customers go. I have been involved since 1978. I work with adoption groups as well. Trying to shut down an industry based on many lies to hurt the FL economy and force thousands of greyhounds that are being cared for into overcrowded shelters is a travesty-this would be a terrible mess to rip them out of caring environments and thrust them into shelters. My racing greyhounds spend their days full of activity in a climate controlled kennel monitored by security, when not outside playing, racing, walking or sprinting. The greys spend most of their early years with their littermates and kennel buddies-in a similar setting as an athlete in training camp. I know how much the greyhound breed thrives in a kennel environment during their high school competitive years and why they are sought out as great companions when they retire because of their care and interactions. I for one would like to see Mr. Theil debate Mr. Parker. I believe the Florida voters should see this educational debate. Florida voters know many of us trainers personally, have been to our kennels, know our children and families and see the scam. No on 13 “paws down.”

  12. And lets not forget that Christine Dorchak, President of Grey2K USA has openly admitted that she indeed wrote the proposal. Tom Lee as the “sponsor” simply accepted a check and signed his name under her verbiage. That in itself is unethical and disingenuous. As is every single word that comes out of the mouths and off of the fingertips of the Yes on 13 proponents. Amendment 13 has awakened a sleeping wolf, and the radical activists days are numbered. Starting on November 6th, when Florida votes #NoOn13

    supportgreyhounds.org

    1. Yes, let’s not forget that all of them, as proven by being in bed with racketeers, never tell the truth. PETA is where Dorchak got her start, long live the NRA!!!!

  13. It should also be noted that greyhound racing is subsidized by Florida taxpayers, according to a study done 5 years ago, in 2013, $1.1 to 3M per year.

  14. Andy, “Not true” doesn’t prove anything and it certainly doesn’t reflect the public records. Ms. Nova-Fuson is simply stating a fact. And, you clearly don’t have an answer when facts are used against your opinion. In a desperate attempt to influence those who hunt and get the backing of the NRA, anti-Prop 13 people will say anything. The name calling, the language used in their posts, the total lack of acknowledging the facts says a great deal about who you are, and what you are willing to say and do to get your way. I suspect Grey2K USA Worldwide is not responding to John Parker’s challenge because Parker wants to debate issues that have absolutely nothing to do with what Prop. 13 calls for…..Carey’s time is spent for the greyhounds and eliminating in Florida the cruel industry that uses and abuses them to make money.

    1. Here are some facts for you. 1. HSUS was fined 15 million dollars for paying a witness to LIE 2. Grey2k’s president is a PROVEN LIAR 3. Grey2k is aligned and supported by a terrorist organization ALF, Dorchak’s picture is right there on their website and she speaks at their meetings 4. Grey2k has been implicated in trying to blackmail a West Va gubernatorial candidate in 2012 5. Dorchak got her start with PETA. 6. Grey2k brings in 600k a year and the 2 head liars pay themselves over 100k of that and give less than 1 percent to any greyhound

      They are liars and fraudsters of the highest order, Thiel won’t debate because he is a lying coward. NRA is 100 percent correct. We have NASCAR and now the NRA on our side, you have terrorists and racketeers on yours, that says it ALL

    2. Imagine that, you’re a board member of the scam group, Fred has already proved himself to be a liar, I suspect you are the same along with Eric. You do realize you people are lunatic fringe weirdos

      Most people are rational, and MANY are NRA members, far more than you lunatics

    3. From the 3820/2018 CRC meeting::::

      CHAIRMAN BERUFF: A follow up question. I
      did call the Secretary of DPBR, something like
      that, that one, to ask the question of the
      financial impacts on the State because I was —
      I took, you know, I listened to the audience as
      they spoke and how it costs us more to regulate
      than what it generates and so forth.
      And I was — his answer was, we take in
      more revenue than it costs to regulate that
      industry. So it is a little bit different than
      the — what you have said. So I am — and I
      had this discussion, what is today, today is
      Tuesday, I must have had it Thursday of last
      week or Friday, so it is very fresh in my mind.
      So there is a disconnect between what you
      say and what I saw, so what how, what do you
      attribute that to?

  15. Andy, your word choices speak for themselves about the type of person you are: “fraudsters” “terrorist” affiliation, “blackmail” “scam group” “Fred….a liar” me, a liar? Eric a liar? we are “lunatic fringe weirdos?” salaries over $100,000? 1 % to the greyhounds???
    And again….you bring the NRA and NASCAR into this. ? Desperate and pathetic….
    Just as I said before…You refuse to deal in facts. I am not going to continue this conversation with you any further. Keep up your rhetoric and you will continue to bury yourself and your cruel industry.

    1. Of course you aren’t going to continue with it, you are going to run and hide like lying cowards do. Every FACT I stated is true.

      For people reading, see for yourself Google ” Christine Dorchak Animal Liberation Front” Google ” HSUS racketeering”, google ” grey2k blackmail. All one needs to do is look at the pie chart to see the 100k is true. It isn’t us that is going to get buried Nov 6, it is you.

      Notice how they have no problem throwing out their endorsers, such as the murdering ” humane societies” here in Florida, but object to us doing the same with legitimate groups, all american groups, who have never been charged with racketeering by the way.

  16. Gotta love how all the comments have no actual mention of the full amendment. Here it is:

    “New Section of Article X

    Prohibition on racing of and wagering on greyhounds or other dogs.—The humane treatment of animals is a fundamental value of the people of the State of Florida. After December 31, 2020, a person authorized to conduct gaming or pari-mutuel operations may not race greyhounds or any member of the Canis Familiaris subspecies in connection with any wager for money or any other thing of value in this state, and persons in this state may not wager money or any other thing of value on the outcome of a live dog race occurring in this state. The failure to conduct greyhound racing or wagering on greyhound racing after December 31, 2018, does not constitute grounds to revoke or deny renewal of other related gaming licenses held by a person who is a licensed greyhound permitholder on January 1, 2018, and does not affect the eligibility of such permitholder, or such permitholder’s facility, to conduct other pari-mutuel activities authorized by general law. By general law, the legislature shall specify civil or criminal penalties for violations of this section and for activities that aid or abet violations of this section.

    New Section of Article XII

    Prohibition on racing or wagering on greyhounds or other dogs.—The amendment to Article X, which prohibits the racing of or wagering on greyhound and other dogs, and the creation of this section, shall take effect upon the approval of the electors.[6]”

    All of this fear mongering on ending dog sporting activities and hunting is false. Any other dog sporting can still happen AS LONG AS you’re not betting on the outcome. And under no circumstances will any other gaming licenses by those casinos be affected, nor will any other dog sporting events that don’t have gambling/betting involved. Unless you all are betting on your amateur dog racing or agility tracks or whatever else (or betting on your dogs while hunting?), you will still be able to do those things. Don’t just take any one organization or person’s word for it, go directly to the source.

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