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President Trump Signs Bill Into Law Making Animal Cruelty A Federal Crime

Since the beginning of the year, legislators have fought hard to close a gap in local and state animal cruelty laws to ensure that unspeakable acts against animals could be punished at the federal level.

And every step of the way, we've charted the progress of the bill they would create.

Indeed, we had something encouraging to report at each of those steps, but politics can be unpredictable even when it seems impossible to have qualms with a given piece of legislation.

However, this bill's long road through the government's checks has finally come to an end with one final decision.

It's worth noting that the bill was always more specific than it may sound.

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As ABC News reported, the bill sought to expand the 2010 Animal Crush Video Prohibition Act rather than get in the way of any existing state and county laws against animal cruelty.

As for why this expansion was necessary, it has to do with the fact that only distribution of videos where people crushed animals was made illegal in 2010.

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Until the passing of the new Preventing Animal Cruelty and Torture (PACT) Act, the actual act at the center of producing these videos was not considered a federal crime.

Now, the actual intentional crushing of the animal is a felony and becomes federally relevant if it was done for the purpose of interstate or foreign commerce.

Nonetheless, both representatives in the House and the Senate unanimously agreed that this was an important step to eliminating animal cruelty.

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As Senator Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania said when the bill made it through the Senate earlier this month, "Evidence shows that the deranged individuals who harm animals often move on to committing acts of violence against people. It is appropriate that the federal government has strong animal cruelty laws and penalties."

And now that the bill has been signed by President Donald Trump, it will officially become a law.

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The bill reached the president's desk on Monday afternoon and was apparently signed without incident or comment.

At least on paper, there is now no jurisdiction in the United States in which people can get away with animal cruelty.

h/t: ABC News