JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - The Republican-led Missouri House has passed legislation guaranteeing the right to hold rodeos in the state.
Supporters say the measure protects rodeos from animal-rights groups that have raised concerns over the treatment of animals. But many House Democrats opposed the bill, citing a controversial State Fair rodeo act last year that mocked President Barack Obama.
Sponsoring Republican Rep. Tom Hurst, of Meta, says the bill wasn't intended to be a political matter. Democratic Rep. Genise Montecillo, of St. Louis, says she was embarrassed by last year's rodeo act and opposes the legislation.
The measure states that no law or regulation may prohibit the conducting of or participation in rodeos in this state
The House voted 113-27 on Thursday to send the bill to the Senate.
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