Ashley Judd Targets Sarah Palin for Sport Hunting

02/05/2009 at 10:15 AM EST



Sarah Palin has a brand new rival: the Defenders of Wildlife, fronted by actress and animal-rights activist Ashley Judd, NBC News reported on Thursday's Today show.

In a new Web video, Judd tries to move the Alaska governor to stop her state's practice of killing wolves and bears from airplanes – a sport in which Palin herself has said she participates.

"It's time to stop Sarah Palin and stop this senseless savagery," Judd, 40, declares in the clip posted on the Web site established by Defenders of Wildlife Action Fund.

Palin, the former GOP vice-presidential candidate, counters in her own statement that the program is scientifically based and key when it comes to sustaining moose and caribou populations for Alaska subsistence hunters.

Palin, 44, also says about the animal-rights group: "It is reprehensible and hypocritical that the Defenders of Wildlife would use Alaska and my administration as a fundraising tool to deceive Americans into parting with their hard-earned money … Shame on the Defenders of Wildlife for twisting the truth in an effort to raise funds from innocent and hard-pressed Americans struggling with these rough economic times."

Neither side appears ready to back down.

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