GOP Decides Food Poisoning Not Needed for Freedom

December 20, 2010

(ChattahBox Political News)—When Democrats impose any sort of regulation on businesses, the right-wing goes off the rails ranting about the tyranny of an overreaching federal government and a loss of freedom. And so it went with the recent passage of a long overdue food safety bill, the first overhaul of government oversight in 70-years. Apparently, sickness and even death from salmonella poisoning and E. coli bacteria is preferable to government regulation. Exploding diarrhea means freedom, according to Sen. Tom Coburn (R-OK) and Fox News’ conspiracy theorist Glenn Beck.

But despite the absurd right-wing rhetoric, the food safety bill passed through the House and the Senate. But an error in the measure required another Senate vote. And lawmakers, led by Coburn, whom Comedy Central’s Jon Stewart mocked, as “Masters of Our Ptomaine” took the opportunity to kill it. But suddenly on Sunday, a deal was struck with the Republican food poisoning contingent and the bill was passed almost instantly. Sen. Tom Harkin (D-IA) hailed the reform of our food safety as an early Christmas present for Americans.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) managed to save the food safety bill after weekend negotiations with Republicans.

“After a weekend of negotiations, tense strategy sessions and several premature predictions about the bill’s demise, Senate Majority Leader Harry M. Reid (D-Nev.) reached a deal with Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) that the GOP would not filibuster.”

“Without notice and in a matter of minutes Sunday evening, the Senate approved the bill by unanimous consent, sending it to the House, where passage is expected. President Obama has said he would sign the legislation, which would give the government far-reaching authority to set and enforce safety standards for farmers and food processors.”

Jean Halloran, director of food policy initiatives at Consumers Union, released a statement praising passage of the bill that was thought dead in the water, saying “This reaffirmed my faith in democracy.”

Photo Source: Wikimedia/ Flickr/bradleyj/Creative Commons Attribution


4 Responses to “GOP Decides Food Poisoning Not Needed for Freedom”

  1. James Sorick on December 20th, 2010 9:24 pm

    This bill if passed will be the slow death of the family farm and end the farmers markets across the country. The FDA has plenty enough power already. Their is a “protection” for small farms with less than $1 million revenue a year, but a small Mom and Pop farm on 20 acres can produce that. That is Gross, not Net. When you take in operating costs and the amount of time those farmers work, many are netting less than minimum wage.

    In the meantime, the FDA which has been infiltrated by big Pharma and Agribusiness will continue to push crops laden with pesticides and meat tainted with growth hormones and other toxins.

    The best thing that can happen for this country is for the house to not pass this bill and make the FDA exercise the powers that it already has.

  2. cartier love on December 23rd, 2010 2:40 am

    “GOP Decides Food Poisoning Not Needed for Freedom”,I was attracted by the title….

  3. Vicki on December 26th, 2010 8:14 pm

    Food safety is more important than fear mongering and right wing idiocy like the comment above. No small farms will be harmed or put out of business. Food safety regulations are appropritate and the GOP are only against any and everything because it puts a dent in corporate profits and greed. That is the only reason the GOP stands against anything. It is always corporate greed for the GOP over and above any other consideration like people’s lives. Republicans lie cheat and scare the willies out of people who will not think for themselves.

  4. Stephen on January 4th, 2011 9:50 am

    The FDA imposed nothing unless it is somekind of power grab. They are constantly opposing raw and unrefined food producers and growers from raw milk dairies to organic farming.

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