Biden to sign funding for school archery and hunting programs

By 
 October 3, 2023

President Joe Biden is expected to sign legislation that protects funding for school archery and hunting programs, which he had previously opposed before it passed Congress overwhelmingly. 

The Protecting Hunting Heritage and Education Act sponsored by Rep. Mark Green (R-TN) passed the House 424-1, and was unanimous in the Senate.

The bill “prevents the Department of Education from blocking federal funding to public schools for hunting, shooting, archery and other outdoor programs," the Sportsmen's Alliance said.

Fox News claimed in July that the administration was withholding funding for schools with such programs, citing the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) of 1965 and the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act (BSCA) passed last year.

Millions impacted

The administration's actions impacted millions of students across the country who were enrolled in the programs, Fox News said.

Sens. John Cornyn, R-Texas, and Thom Tillis, R-N.C. wrote a letter to Education Secretary Miguel Cardona at the time of the report, suggesting that the BSCA was being misinterpreted to prohibit the funding.

"We were alarmed to learn recently that the Department of Education has misinterpreted the BCSA to require the defending of certain longstanding educational and enrichment programs — specifically, archery and hunter education classes — for thousands of children, who rely on these programs to develop life skills, learn firearm safety and build self-esteem," Cornyn and Tillis wrote to Cardona.

"The Department mistakenly believes that the BSCA precludes funding these enrichment programs," they continued. "Such an interpretation contradicts congressional intent and the text of the BSCA."

Laws working together

Cornyn had helped Biden pass the BSCA, but didn't realize it was going to be used in conjunction with the ESEA to withhold the funding.

The new legislation amends the ESEA so that can't happen.

Biden really has no choice but to go along with the new law, since it has such overwhelming support that Congress could surely override any veto.

It's clear that Biden wanted to use the law to prevent millions of kids from being trained how to use guns and other weapons safely and legally. It fits with his agenda to get as many guns out of law-abiding people's hands as possible.

It's good that Congress could see how harmful this could be and decided to prevent it from happening, given that there are great benefits to the programs for students.

Biden will have to go back to the drawing board to figure out the next way he wants to try to control weaponry even more.

" A free people [claim] their rights, as derived from the laws of nature."
Thomas Jefferson
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