A setback for animal-rights activists in Switzerland:
Voters in Switzerland have rejected a proposal to introduce a nationwide system of state-funded lawyers to represent animals in court. Animal rights groups had proposed the move, saying that without lawyers to argue the animals' case, many instances of cruelty were going unpunished.
But the measure was rejected by around 70% of voters in a referendum.
U.S. "regulatory czar" Cass Sunstein wrote in favor of establishing something like this as a law professor, which led to hunting rights activists Saxby Chambliss and John Cornyn holding up his senate confirmation for a time. It's a safe bet that Sunstein won't touch anything like the Swiss proposal with a ten-foot poll now that he's actually in government, but it would still be interesting to know his thoughts on it.
On a slightly related note, I have a short piece in the last print magazine about circumstances under which animals observe human national borders.
FABRICE COFFRINI/AFP/Getty Image