Heard on the Hill

It was a good hare day for Rep. Tony Cárdenas

California Democrat is co-sponsor of the Humane Cosmetics Act

Sara Amundson, president of the Humane Society Legislative Fund, holds Paxton, a 4-year-old rescue rabbit, during an event at the Rayburn Building on Tuesday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

What has two ears, continuously eats and can barely stay still? No, not me (but not a bad guess).

I’m referring to the rabbits that took over Capitol Hill on Tuesday morning. The Humane Society Legislative Fund, along with other animal advocacy groups, hosted around a dozen “House” bunnies in the Rayburn foyer.

The icing on top of the carrot cake? These furry friends were available for adoption. While the event was AYCP (all you can pet), the bunnies were meant to educate members of Congress and staffers about the consequences of testing cosmetic products on animals.

The legislation at the heart of the event is the Humane Cosmetics Act, which would ban testing cosmetics on animals in the U.S. The bipartisan measure is expected to be reintroduced soon “pending negotiations with the cosmetics industry to arrive at mutually supported language,” according to a press release handed out at the event.

California Rep. Tony Cárdenas is a co-sponsor of the bill, along with Democratic Rep. Don Beyer and Republican Sen. Martha McSally.

The cosmetics industry “can get the proper results that they deserve to arrive at for product safety without using bunnies,” Cárdenas said.

The congressman has a particular soft spot for Belle — a staff member’s rabbit often found hopping around the office. “It’s not my office when Belle’s there — it’s Belle’s office,” Cárdenas said, shortly after lint-rolling a few rabbit hairs from his suit jacket.

Rep. Tony Cárdenas is co-sponsor of the Humane Cosmetic Act which would ban cosmetic testing on animals (Photo: Kathryn Lyons / CQ Roll Call)Rep. Tony Cárdenas is co-sponsor of the Humane Cosmetics Act, which would ban cosmetic testing on animals. (Kathryn Lyons / CQ Roll Call)

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