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U.P. Vote Drowned Out on Wolf Hunt Proposals

Upper Peninsula voters overwhelmingly approved two ballot proposals on Tuesday that would have allowed a wolf hunt to be held in the U.P. But the votes of people who live in Lower Michigan…where there are no wolves…drowned out the U.P. vote. According to the Secretary of State’s office, nearly 3 million people voted on the issue but only 95,000 were cast from the U.P. State Senator Tom Casperson has championed a wolf hunt as a way to regulate the number of wolves that threaten small U.P. communities. The Escanaba Republican says that the issue should have been left up to Upper Peninsula residents to decide, since the wolves are only found in the U.P. But Jill Fritz, the state director of the US Humane Society, says Michigan’s natural resources, including the wolf, is the property of all Michigan residents, even those who live in the Lower Peninsula hundreds of miles away from the nearest wolf. Tuesday’s vote may be a moot point however because a third law will take effect in April that allows for a wolf hunt, and it cannot be overturned by a referendum. That’s because a $1 million appropriation to fight Asian Carp was attached to that initiative. Fritz’s group Keep Michigan Wolves Protected and the Humane Society of the United States have vowed to challenge that law in court.

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