FYI: US Farm Bill: GMO Labeling, Factory Farms, ...

Subject: Farm Bill Vote Resumes Today. Contact Your Senators about GMO Labeling, Factory Farms, and More!
From: Organic Consumers Association
Date: 6/3/2013 5:11 AM

Today, Monday, June 3, the Senate returns from its Memorial Day recess to vote on more amendments to the 2013 Farm Bill. Your Senators' votes will have an impact on everything from labeling genetically modified organisms (GMOs) and banning genetically engineered salmon, to protecting honeybees, curbing the over-use of antibiotics on factory farm animals and allowing U.S. farmers to grow industrial hemp.

Please choose the issues you're most concerned about (grouped below by topic), then call your Senators at (202) 224-3121 (click here to send an email [ ]) to let them know how you'd like them to vote, and why.

You can say:

"Hello, my name is ___ and I'm a constituent and a voter. I would like to leave a message for Senator ___'s agriculture staffer. Can you take a message for me, please? When amendments to the 2013 Farm Bill are voted on this week, I'd like Senator ___ to vote to ...

• ... label genetically engineered food." (Support Boxer Amendments 1025 and 1026)
• ... repeal the Monsanto Protection Act." (Support Merkley Amendment 978)
• ... ban genetically engineered salmon." (Support Begich Amendment 934)

• ... save the honeybees." (Support Boxer Amendment 1027)

• ... give organic farmers equal access to funds for environmental improvement." (Support Leahy Amendment 1093)

• ... add climate change mitigation to conservation programs." (Support Whitehouse Amendment 1058)

• ... address factory farms' drug abuse problem, responsible for antibiotic-resistant superbugs that infect hundreds of thousands and kill tens of thousands of Americans each year." (Support Gillibrand Amendment 940)
• ... reign in the factory farm and meatpacking cartels that subject contract farmers to abusive practices that reduce food quality, animal welfare and worker safety." (Support Grassley Amendment 969, Rockefeller Amendment 993, Tester Amendment 971, and Enzi Amendments 981 and 982)

• ... legalize industrial hemp." (Support Wyden Amendment 952)

• ... increase funding for eat-local and farm-to-consumer programs." (Support Brown Amendment 1088)

• ... stop attempts to take food assistance from hungry families." (Oppose Sessions Amendments 946 and 947, Roberts Amendments 949 and 950, Thune Amendment 991, Coburn Amendments 100, 1002, 1005, and 1009, and Vitter Amendment 1056)

• ... place long-overdue limits of $50,000 on crop insurance premium subsidies for America's wealthiest large-scale farmers." (Support Shaheen Amendment 926)

• ... make sure farmers who get federal money for irrigation aren't wasting water." (Support Udall Amendment 1049)

Thanks for calling (202-224-3121) and emailing (click here [ ]) your Senators!

If you read Organic Bytes on Thursday, you know that Monsanto has been getting its way with the Senate. Lawmakers voted down an amendment to affirm the existing right of states to label genetically engineered food and have, so far, blocked a vote on repealing the Monsanto Protection Act.

If you haven't already...

Please find out how your Senators voted on the Sanders Amendment in support of states' rights to label GMOs and call and email them to let them know what you think. [ ]

Please call and email Senators Cochran and Blunt to ask them to stop blocking a vote on Senator Merkley's Amendment to repeal the Monsanto Protection Act. [ ]

Sign our petition opposing the King Amendment and any other attempt by Congress to take away states' rights to label GMOs. [ ]

More bad news...

The Food Research and Action Center reports that Senator Kirsten Gillibrand's (D-NY) amendment to restore $4.1 billion/ten year in cuts to nutrition assistance for hungry families was defeated by a 70-26 vote.

Some good news...

At least one good thing has happened during Senate votes on Farm Bill amendments. The National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition reports:

"Because of calls from grassroots advocates like you, the Senate passed an amendment – the Durbin-Coburn amendment – that takes a bold first step towards reforming ballooning crop insurance subsidies for wealthy mega-farms in the 2013 Farm Bill!

"Calls from constituents helped encourage 59 Senators to support this common-sense, long overdue amendment. Even better, it will save taxpayers over 1.3 billion dollars and will ensure maximum support goes only to those who need it, not a handful of mega-farms."

Constituent communications work! Please call (202-224-3121) and email (click here [ ]) your Senators today!

Alexis Baden-Mayer, Esq.
Political Director

Organic Consumers Association [ ]

6771 South Silver Hill Drive - Finland, MN 55603 - Phone: 218-226-4164 - Fax: 218-353-7652 Follow OCA: Twitter [ ] | Facebook [ ] | Pinterest [ ]

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    About Tom Usher

    Employment: 2008 - present, website developer and writer. 2015 - present, insurance broker. Education: Arizona State University, Bachelor of Science in Political Science. City University of Seattle, graduate studies in Public Administration. Volunteerism: 2007 - present, president of the Real Liberal Christian Church and Christian Commons Project.
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