Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa, has proposed an amendment to the Farm Bill that is designed to destroy state laws protecting food safety, animal welfare and the environment. It is best known for the provision called Protect Interstate Commerce Act, PICA, aka the King amendment.

PICA would force states to authorize the sale of “any agricultural product” not prohibited under federal law. If any one state tolerates the production or manufacture of a particular agricultural product, under PICA the other 49 must do so as well, thus completely ignoring the 10th Amendment’s guarantee of state sovereign rights. “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.” This amendment would upend the constitutional balance between state and federal government.

According to the Harvard Law School Animal Law & Policy Program Report, PICA could potentially overturn hundreds of established state and local laws regarding food quality and safety, infectious diseases, animal welfare, invasive species, fishing regulations, product labeling requirements and pesticide management, among others. If passed, it could have far reaching impacts beyond traditional agricultural commodities.

Please call your congressmen and say “No” to PICA.

Karin Kraft

Olympia, Wash.

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