Pets Banned after Cats Interrupt Virtual Committee Meeting

There’s bad news for four-legged New Hampshire residents with political aspirations: You’ve been banned from all future meetings of state lawmakers.

Representative John Hunt, who chairs the House Commerce and Consumer Affairs Committee, has banned pets from virtual meetings after unscheduled appearances Wednesday by Yoshi and Jack, cats that belong to Representative Anita Burroughs. “I can try to keep the cats off the screen,” Burroughs says in response to the ban. “Keeping them out of the room is going to be impossible.”

Burroughs feels she’s being unfairly singled out, she says, because Yoshi and Jack aren’t the only pets to make unscheduled appearances during committee meetings. A dog, children, and other cats have also turned up in recent weeks, she says. “That’s part of the life we’re living right now, and pets are part of it, too,” Burroughs says. “For me personally, it’s just calming having my animals sit next to me so I can pet them, and it doesn’t distract me in any way. I’m fully attentive to what’s going on.”

Is Hunt being a little anal about this? If you take part in virtual meetings, are you comfortable allowing your coworkers to see inside your house?

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