Congress passes ‘Tiger King’ invoice banning personal possession of huge cats

Story abstract

  • Congress unanimously voted to ban the personal possession of huge cats with no single “no” vote within the senate
  • Current large cats have to be registered
  • No new cats might be acquired/bought/owned
  • Public contact with six sorts of large cats can also be banned
  • Licensed zoos and sanctuaries are exempt
Unique story by Steven Nelson of The New York Publish

WASHINGTON — Rating one other win for Carole Baskin. The principle antagonist of Netflix’s “Tiger King” Joe Unique prevailed once more over her locked-up nemesis late Tuesday with congressional passage of laws banning personal possession of tigers, lions and different large cats.

The Baskin-backed invoice sailed via the Senate with no single “no” vote and now goes to President Biden’s desk to change into regulation. The White Home says Biden will signal the invoice, which handed the Home 278-134 in July.

“Apparently I’m tougher to intimidate and kill than some thought!” Baskin mentioned in a video celebrating the milestone — a transparent jab at Unique, who’s serving a 21-year federal jail sentence for crimes together with hiring somebody to kill her.

“The passage of the invoice is the profitable end result of a few years of battling in opposition to narcissistic, abusive, harmful males who dominated the merciless commerce and did the whole lot they may to cease its passage, together with eager to intimidate, discredit and even kill me,” Baskin mentioned.

The laws phases out the possession of huge cats by forbidding personal homeowners from buying new animals whereas forcing them to register their current shares.

It additionally bans direct public contact with six sorts of large cats — lions, tigers, leopards, snow leopards, jaguars and cougars. Baskin contends cubs usually are killed by homeowners after rising out of their potential as revenue mills.

The invoice exempts licensed zoos and sanctuaries resembling Baskin’s personal Massive Cat Rescue facility in Tampa, Fla.

Baskin, 61, grew to become nationally well-known in 2020 with the large success of the documentary collection that documented her rivalry with Unique, now 59, who described himself as a “homosexual, gun-carrying, redneck with a mullet.”

Baskin campaigned in opposition to Oklahoma-based Unique’s companies, together with creating public stress to halt his tiger cub-petting gigs. In retaliation, Unique accused Baskin of feeding her lacking first husband Don Lewis, who disappeared in 1997, to her personal large cats.

Unique even produced a music and music video referred to as “Right here Kitty Kitty” about Baskin allegedly feeding Lewis’ physique elements to lions and tigers.

Unique additionally accused Baskin of hypocrisy in her marketing campaign in opposition to large cat possession, noting that her sanctuary originated with a personal assortment.

Unique operated the Better Wynnewood Unique Animal Park, specializing in tigers and lions, and allegedly paid $3,000 in 2017 to Allen Glover — the right-hand-man of his enterprise rival Jeff Lowe — to homicide Baskin after years of violent rants in opposition to her.

Unique, additionally convicted of federal animal abuse, mentioned he was framed and Glover recanted his testimony final 12 months, saying in a sworn affidavit that “Jeff Lowe created the whole murder-for-hire plot from begin to end.”

Prosecutors mentioned this 12 months, nonetheless, that Unique’s conviction ought to stand due to secret recordings wherein he appeared to substantiate particulars of Glover’s preliminary allegation.

Baskin mentioned that the invoice headed to Biden for closing approval will remove mistreatment of huge felines.

“Inside a decade, a lot of the hundreds of huge cats residing this manner may have handed away, and in 20 years, no large cats will likely be residing in this type of distress,” she mentioned in her celebratory video.