THE DARK ACT IS BACK – A Bill to preempt GMO labeling
Call to action!
There was a time when businesses proudly proclaimed “the customer is always right!” However, when it comes to GMO labeling, despite an overwhelming consensus of more than 90 percent of Americans who want mandatory on-package labeling, the saying seems to have been “we don’t care what the customer thinks.”
Hershey’s, headquartered here in PA, must realize that it’s time to listen to their customers and put them first. There are a myriad of reasons why people want GMOs labeled and make informed choices when it comes to feeding ourselves and our families. Hershey’s already label their products for countries outside of the US and should raise their standard accordingly here.
Please call them today and tell them they have an unprecedented opportunity to get on the right side of history by standing with their customers before Vermont’s GMO labeling law is implemented on July 1st when all food companies will have to comply. Ask them to label all GMOs in their food products AND help set the stan
dard for transparency by calling for mandatory, on-package GMO labeling.
Let’s make a commitment to helping companies understand the benefits of standing with the people rather than against us, starting with Hershey’s. Call today! (717) 534 4200
One of his regional offices, please join us THIS Friday at 10:30 am for a rally. Make signs, make your voices heard!
Here are the details:
Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know if you can meet on Friday.
We will try to set you up with other folks in your area.
Meet outside the regional office at 10:15 am to gather.
Rallying takes place only on the sidewalks. We cannot block entrance ways or be on private property.
Take photos and send them to us and we will post them on our facebook page!
We are sending a clear message to Senator Casey: NO COMPROMISE.
If you want a federal labeling bill, it needs to meet or exceed the standards set by Vermont’s law.
If you can’t make the rally, please continue to call his offices.
Here are the addresses and phone numbers of all of the regional offices:
817 E. Bishop Street, Suite C
Bellefonte, PA 16823
17 South Park Row, Suite B-150
Erie, PA 16501
200 N Third St, Suite 14A
Harrisburg, PA 17101
840 Hamilton Street, Suite 301
Allentown, PA 18101
417 Lackawanna Avenue, Suite 303
Scranton, PA 18503
2000 Market Street, Suite 610
Philadelphia, PA 19103
310 Grant Street, Suite 2415
Pittsburgh, PA 15219
Thank you for your commitment to transparency in our food system!
March 16, Americans notched a huge win in the battle to take back control of our food and our government from corporate influence. Because of phone calls, emails, Facebook posts, tweets, and office visits from you and other Americans over the last three months, the Senate vote on cloture for the DARK Act failed by a vote of 49 NAY to 48 YEA.
Even with a sneaky change to the bill number (S.2609 mysteriously became S.764, previously a bill to defund Planned Parenthood), the DARK Act failed to get the 60 votes that were needed to pass. The conversation on the Senate floor brought into focus the issue of special interest money in politics vs. the rights of the American people. And it’s long overdue.
Welcome to Hollywood
Despite scheduling the hearing during five presidential primaries, the Senate made prime time yesterday. All in all, the actors did a great job and it was quite a show! Here’s what you need to know about the vote:
Senator McConnell, the majority leader, cast a NO vote on S.764, not because he’s against the DARK Act, but because his vote gives him the ability to bring the bill back up after further amendment.
The drama continued when Senator Stabenow also voted NO, but her comments show another side of her story. She said she hopes a deal could be struck “yet this week. We were on the phone late into the night.” Sen. Stabenow has made it clear that she would like to work with Sen. Roberts, sponsor of the DARK Act, to find a “compromise,” such as mandatory QR codes or some other such nonsense that doesn’t pass Senator Merkley’s “one second test” for easy, on-package access to the information we need in the grocery store. According to reports, it is likely that, after an hour nap, the anti-transparency Senators were back to work at another frenzied attempt to block Vermont’s GMO labeling law from taking effect on July 1st.
Take a moment to celebrate and breathe. Then we must press on and maintain our vision of victory. Victory will protect Vermont’s GMO labeling law from being overturned, allowing it to go into effect on July 1st, as scheduled. Victory will protect Connecticut, Maine, Alaska and all states’ rights to pass mandatory GMO labeling laws. Ultimately, victory will achieve a national, mandatory, clearly-worded, on-package GMO labeling standard equivalent to what was passed in Connecticut, Vermont and Maine. There must be no compromise. We, the People, cannot relent.
Continue to contact key Senators (below) and your own Senators. Some senators on both sides of the political aisle who previously supported the DARK Act backed off and voted NAY. This is a testament that our collective voices and actions make a difference. Let’s get louder!
TALKING POINTS TO INCLUDE WHEN YOU CALL:
• No version of the DARK Act is acceptable. Only mandatory, clearly-worded, on-package GMO labeling will do.
• No QR codes, 800 numbers, social media or other indirect methods of communication.
• QR codes discriminate against economically challenged individuals, rural residents, the elderly, parents shopping with small children and certain religious groups that cannot use smart phones.
• Use of QR codes would result in an invasion of privacy.
• Preemption of states’ rights is unacceptable and is unconstitutional. Vermont’s GMO labeling law must stand and go into effect on July 1, 2016.
Contact our PA Senators:
Sen. Bob Casey (D-PA) voted against the DARK Act, please encourage him to continue to stand with his constituents in Pennsylvania. To vote for mandatory, 4 simple words on a pack, “made with genetic engineering”
Sen. Pat Toomey (R-PA) voted for the DARK Act: Encourage him to vote against any QR codes and to keep states rights and vote against corporation/GMA’s lobbyist rhetoric.
KEY SENATORS TO CONTACT:
1) Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) voted against the DARK Act, but has vowed to work with Sen. Pat Roberts. We hear she will try to compromise with QR Codes, again:
2) Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) previously supported, but voted against the DARK Act:
3) Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND) voted for the DARK Act:
4) Sen. Joe Donnelly (D-IN) voted for the DARK Act:
5) Sen. Tom Carper (D-DE) voted for the DARK Act:
Sound the Alarm!
IT’S BACK! A Bill
to preempt state GMO labeling, it number is S. 2609! WE need to stop this bill, NOW!!
The Legal Analysis of Senate Bill on Genetically Engineered Food Labeling (The DARK Act) The Bill has GMO labeling activists were successful last year in avoiding the passage of the DARK Act through the Senate, but last week, Senate AG Committee Chair Pat Roberts (R- Kan) introduced a bill that would preempt Vermont and other states’ mandatory GMO labeling laws and replace them with a voluntary federal labeling standard.
If this bill passes through the Senate, we will be back at square one. Vermont’s bill will die and big food companies will continue to get away with keeping consumers in the DARK about the ingredients in their foods.
There’s a reason why we call the bill that passed the House last summer the Deny Americans the Right to Know Act (DARK Act). This bill would prohibit any state from labeling GMOs and make federal labeling voluntary — which, to be clear, it already is — and not a single product is labeled as containing genetically engineered ingredients.
Roberts’ bill on the Senate Floor, introduced on behalf of Monsanto and the Grocery Manufacturers Association, is just another example of U.S. politicians doing the bidding of Monsanto and giant food corporation.
WE CAN’T LET THIS PASS!
It’s time to make calls again.
The bill will be marked up this coming Thursday, February 25th.
We are asking that you PLEASE CALL Senator Casey’s office this week – Monday through Thursday – and ask him to support consumers in their right to know what is in their food.
Call the Washington DC office at (202) 224- 6324 and feel free to call his regional offices as well:
WE NEED MANDATORY ON PACKAGE LABELS!
We want transparency and our representatives need to know that consumer choice and health come before corporate profit!
Thank you for helping us ensure that we have a safe and transparent food system!
GMO FREE PA
Call Senator Mitch McConnell at (202) 224-2541. Please state the following:“Senator McConnell, I am calling to ask you to reject Senator Roberts’ bill, S. 2609, the “DARK Act”. Do not bring this bill to the floor. Please stand with the American people and reject any attempts to preempt states’ rights and keep us in the DARK about what we are eating.”
We have been informed that S2609 will be taken to the floor NEXT WEEK for a vote. If this “DARK Act” passes everything we hold true in our minds and hearts for a transparent food system, will be wiped out and we will likely never know whether there are GMOs in our food. We must pick up the phone and call US Senate Majority leader Mitch McConnell. We need to light up the phones, generate thousands of emails and unleash the power of the grassroots each and everyday until they call the bill or give up!
This is truly a story of David vs Goliath. The most powerful industries on the planet (junk food and biotech) are joined together to stop the will of the people. Over 90% of Americans want GMOs labeled, every poll shows the same numbers. What the federal government is doing right now is an attack on democracy not just because they are about to pass a law that puts industry interests over personal rights, but also because state preemption does NOT happen without a strong federal standard in it’s place. This is unprecedented. Republicans who claim the value states’ rights only do so until states’ right conflict with industry interests.