Hunting and Fishing Amendment Ahead, 5 to 1

Voting totals so far show the constitutional amendment affirming Tennesseans’ right to hunt and fish with a strong lead, with five voters in favor for every one against.

If the measure is approved, the following text will be added to the state Constitution:

“The citizens of this state shall have the personal right to hunt and fish, subject to reasonable regulations and restrictions prescribed by law. The recognition of this right does not abrogate any private or public property rights, nor does it limit the state’s power to regulate commercial activity. Traditional manners and means may be used to take non-threatened species.”

State officials have said that the amendment would not hinder the state’s authority to regulate hunting and fishing, though critics have said the language is unnecessary and excessive. More than a dozen other states have guarantees of hunters’ rights written into their constitutions, and others are considering measures.