During the regular session, it was the old "saved by the bell" excuse (aka oh look at the time, we will have to vote on that next session, they promised), which Gov. Huntsman called them on. This special session, they have a new one
Sen. Allen Christensen, R-North Ogden, argued that the bill could potentially ruin the life of someone "who does a one-time stupid thing," and proposed an alternative that would make animal torture a felony on a second offense committed within five years.
Sen. Jon Greiner, a Republican who is Ogden's police chief, said the Legislature may be making it a crime to drop an animal off near a shelter if the shelter happens to be closed.
He also noted other crimes - child abuse, sexual abuse of a minor, assault of a police officer, and assault of a school employee - that are Class A misdemeanors under Utah law.
"How do we get to a third degree felony [for animal torture] when we don't have enough respect for human life, sexually abused children, that we don't have a higher standard of care for them?" asked Greiner.
The argument didn't wash with [Rhonda] Kamper [who's small black terrier-Chihuahua mix Henry lost an eye when her now-ex-husband chased the dog with a leaf blower, stuffed him in an oven and cooked him for five minutes at 200 degrees].
"They're the lawmakers. If they have a problem with child abuse being a Class A misdemeanor, then change the law," she said.
Greiner suggested jettisoning the bill until January, and the Senate approved the motion 18-11.
As JM Bell pointed out, Michael Vick is a first time offender and will be pleading guilty to federal felony charges on Monday (and faces state felony charges as well). So would Sen. Christensen advocate giving Vick a second chance to hang, drown, and electrocute dogs?
And seriously, what's up with Ogden Republicans? They all love torturing animals? Commenters, please give me any good reason to vote against Henry's law.