WHAT: What exactly is the King amendment?
The King amendment was introduced by Republican Rep. Steve King from Iowa and aims to preempt state and local laws by mandating the least strict regulation over the production or manufacture of agriculture products. The amendment directs:
“The government of a State or locality therein shall not impose a standard or condition on the production or manufacture of any agricultural product sold or offered for sale in interstate commerce if (1) such production or manufacture occurs in another State; and (2) the standard or condition is in addition to the standards and conditions applicable to such production or manufacture pursuant to (A) Federal law; and (B) the laws of the State and locality in which such production or manufacture occurs.”
This overly broad and ambiguous amendment could effectively revoke state authority to set their own reasonable standards on agricultural products.
WHY: Why do we care about it?
Since our agricultural laws are extremely broad, the King amendment would nullify a whole host of state laws, including those preventing farm animal cruelty, regulating puppy breeders, banning shark finning and prohibiting horse slaughter. In addition to animal welfare laws, this amendment would invalidate state laws concerning food safety, GMO labeling, labor standards and environmental protection laws. For a list of the state animal welfare laws being targeted by this amendment as well as other state laws that would be severely affected click here.
HOW: How can you help stop this radically overreaching amendment from becoming law?
You can help by reaching out to your Federal Legislators. Click here to locate contact information on your U.S. Senators and Representatives. Then, let them know by email, phone or in person that you oppose the King amendment and that you strongly urge them to convince the Conference Committee to remove it from the final version of the Federal Farm Bill.
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