FIRST ON FOX: Sens. Kyrsten Sinema, I-Ariz., and Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., are sounding the alarm on the Biden administration’s misinterpretation of a bipartisan law passed last year. The law in question pertains to the withholding of funding from schools that offer hunting and archery courses.
As reported by Fox News Digital, the Department of Education is currently interpreting the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act (BSCA) in a manner that precludes federal funding for school hunter education and archery programs all across the nation. This has raised concerns among both Republicans and Democrats.
The BSCA, despite being criticized by some as a “”gun control”” bill, was seen by many as an effort to promote safer and more inclusive schools. It was introduced and overwhelmingly passed by Congress before being signed into law by President Biden in June 2022, following tragic mass shootings at a grocery market in Buffalo, New York, and a school in Uvalde, Texas.
However, the BSCA included an amendment to a subsection in the 1965 Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), which listed prohibited uses for federal school funding. Specifically, the amendment barred ESEA funds from supporting any person with a dangerous weapon or providing “”training in the use of a dangerous weapon.””
This has led to a contentious interpretation by the Department of Education, causing elementary and secondary school courses that teach children about shooting sports to be denied critical federal funds.
Sens. Sinema and Manchin, along with Sens. John Cornyn, R-Texas, and Thom Tillis, R-N.C., who were all sponsors of the BSCA, are now expressing their disagreement with the administration’s stance. They believe that hunting and archery classes should be eligible for funding and not penalized.
In response, Hannah Hurley, a spokesperson for Sinema, stated, “”We are working with lawmakers on both sides and the Administration to ensure this gets fixed.”” Their goal is to ensure that the law’s intent is upheld and that valuable programs like archery and hunting clubs in schools can continue to receive support.
Other Republican lawmakers have also criticized the Biden administration for this decision. Rep. Mark Green, R-Tenn., has introduced legislation to clarify that school programs that involve training students in archery, hunting, or other shooting sports should be eligible for funding.
Additionally, hunting and pro-Second Amendment groups, including Safari Club International, National Shooting Sports Foundation, International Order of T. Roosevelt, Outdoors Tomorrow Foundation, and the National Rifle Association, have voiced their disapproval of the Education Department’s interpretation.
As this debate continues, it remains clear that lawmakers from both parties are committed to ensuring that valuable programs that teach important skills like hunting and archery are supported in our nation’s schools.
Source Fox News