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Better Know Your Ballot: Prop 6 Aims to Shoot Down Future Hunting Restrictions

A proposed constitutional amendment could preempt any future attempt at limiting hunting and fishing in Texas.

The Texas Constitutional propositions up for a vote on Nov. 3 tend to come in a few different flavors. Some want to change the current constitution to allow something previously blocked. Some are needed to allow a new way for state tax dollars to be used. And some are just added to keep future state lawmakers from passing laws for or against something — that's where Proposition 6 falls.

The proposition would, as the ballot language spells out, recognize the right of the people to hunt, fish, and harvest wildlife. Now, in case you're new to the state, you should know that in the Texas Legislature, anti-hunting measures are about as popular as Oklahoma football – which is to say, not at all.

Almost every candidate running for governor has to shoot something in front of reporters to prove they won't curtail gun ownership or hunting rights. But, as Lufkin State Rep. Trent Ashby reminds us, that doesn't mean things couldn't change one day.

“There are some well-funded anti-hunting groups that exist,” Ashby says. “And they've been working diligently in both statehouses and courthouses to either outright ban or limit certain types of hunting and fishing."

Ashby co-authored the proposition. He says the amendment would block future attempts to regulate or eliminate hunting on state or private land, but he wants to point out that this amendment’s focused on hunting and fishing rights.

“This constitutional amendment does not in any way get into the discussion about gun rights that is going on across the country. This is very simple and straightforward.”

If it passes, Texas would join 18 other states that have already ratified similar amendments to their state constitutions.

Ben Philpott is the Managing Editor for KUT. Got a tip? Email him at Follow him on Twitter @BenPhilpottKUT.
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