Merry Xmas from Republicans and the Meat Lobby

Posted by: on Dec 25, 2003 | No Comments

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WASHINGTON – Legislation to keep meat from downed animals off American kitchen tables was scuttled — for the second time in as many years — as Congress labored unsuccessfully earlier this month to pass a catchall agency spending bill.

Now, in the wake of the apparent discovery of the first mad-cow case in the United States, the author of the House version of the cattle provision wants to press the issue anew when Congress returns Jan. 20 from its winter recess. The massive, $373 billion spending bill covering several government agencies is still pending in the Senate.

“I said on the floor of the House that you will rue the day that because of the greed of the industry to make a few extra pennies from 130,000 head, the industry would sacrifice the safety of the American people,” said Rep. Gary Ackerman, D-N.Y., chief House sponsor. “It’s so pound foolish.”

The provision dealing with downed cattle didn’t even make it into the compromise version of the legislation that House and Senate conferees brought before Congress late in the year.

[Eschaton]

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