Farmers and Ranchers Condemn Sen. Roger Marshall and Rep. Ashley Hinson’s Imminent Assault on States’ Rights and American Agriculture
Washington, D.C. – The Organization for Competitive Markets (OCM), and Competitive Markets Action (CMA) today condemned the so-called Exposing Agriculture Trade Suppression (EATS) Act introduced by Sen. Roger Marshall, R-KS, and Rep. Ashley Hinson, R-IA. Last week, OCM launched a campaign against the EATS Act, a bill that would have a devastating impact on America’s farming and ranching families. This bill erases state laws, giving Chinese corporations unchecked control.
The campaign launched with a major ad buy in Politico with a full page color print ad, digital ads, and sponsorship of Politico’s Weekly and Morning Ag Newsletters and will continue the campaign throughout the upcoming Farm Bill debate. As a part of OCM and CMA’s efforts to educate constituents the groups are launching a drive time radio campaign with targeted spots in competitive House Districts. The 30-second spots encourage listeners to call their elected officials and ask them to vote no on any Farm Bill that contains the Steve King rebranded EATS Act.
The EATS Act, or the so-called “Exposing Agricultural Trade Suppression (EATS) Act,” promoted by Rep. Ashley Hinson, R-Iowa and Sen. Roger Marshall (R-KS), is just a revamped version of the controversial “King Amendment” championed by former Rep. Steve King (R-IA). It is the biggest attack on states’ rights America’s rural communities have likely ever faced. The “King Amendment” failed to make it into the past two farm bills after bi-partisan opposition to it the egregious amendment. Now, legislators working for industrial agriculture interests have rebranded the measure hoping most would not notice.
This legislation will erase thousands of laws passed by state and local governments nationwide that benefit family farms over international conglomerates, as well as those that support dairy farmers, baby food safety, and control the infestation of invasive pests. Put simply, this bill permanently strips power from Agriculture Committees at state and local levels of government.
“If the King Amendment or EATS act or anything like it is added to the farm bill it will be devastating for dairy producers across America,” said Deborah Mills, chair of the National Dairy Producers Organization and a board member at OCM.
“We must prevent the EATS Act from being included in the upcoming Farm Bill and exhaust every resource available to keep this poison pill from becoming law,” said Jonathan Buttram, the president of the Alabama Contract Poultry Growers Association and OCM board Treasurer. “U.S. House and Senate Agriculture Committee leaders Debbie Stabenow, Glenn Thompson, John Boozman, and David Scott should reject this egregious attack against state agriculture laws.”
“OCM is ready, willing, and able to roll up our sleeves and dig in to help prevent the EATS Act from being enacted in the upcoming Farm Bill,” said Taylor Haynes, president of OCM. “American family farmers will not stand for this attack on states’ rights that could land our farms under the control of the Chinese Government.
“The EATS Act is nothing but a Trojan Horse designed to put family farmers out of business and give multinational conglomerates like JBS and Chinese-owned Smithfield an even greater advantage than they already have.” said Mike Schultz, senior vice-president at OCM and founder of the Kansas Cattlemen’s Association. “It’s a crying shame to see my Senator Roger Marshall leading this assault on producers and states’ rights.”
“If the Farm Bill includes this egregious provision and passes it, companies like the Chinese-owned Smithfield and Brazil-based JBS will own livestock production in the United States,” said Marty Irby, president at CMA and board secretary at OCM. “We’d rather have no farm bill than a farm bill with the EATS Act included.”
Year – Action
2013 – Rep. Steve King’s proposal was rejected from the bill and contributed to a failed House final passage vote.
2018 – A Republican-controlled Senate and Democratic-controlled House rejected Rep. King’s Amendment, which would ban states from enacting their own agricultural standards and practices.
In 2018, 32 senators signed a letter opposing the Steve King Amendment saying it would “Feinstein Prop 12 Letter – 32 senators signed overriding these laws is wrong, both as a matter of federalism and public policy, and we should not enact this overhaul of state and local regulatory power.”
2022 – 100 Members of the House signed a letter supporting the rights of states to pass laws supporting farmers and ranchers, the very laws that the EATS Act would wipe out. (that says what we want). On (date), 32 Senators signed a similar letter.
2023 – The Supreme Court rejected the Pork Industry’s challenge to states having the right to enact their own agricultural standards.
2023 – Rep. Hinson (R-IA) and Sen. Marshall (R-KS) announce their goal of adding
The EAT’s Act is a gift to the Chinese and Brazil governments whose agribusiness conglomerates have lobbied to remove U.S. state and local protections for rural communities. If passed, it’ll also be a devastating blow to multigenerational American farmers and ranchers who’d be forced to compete against these foreign industrial operations opening in their locales.
Furthermore, the EATS Act would create a race to the bottom when it comes to food safety in our country, eliminating state laws protecting baby food and the safety of milk for our families.
OCM and CMA are committed to fighting against the EATS Act to ensure that America’s farmers and ranchers don’t get wiped out, our dairy farmers continue to benefit from state laws they’ve worked so hard to pass, and families are able to still purchase safe, affordable food.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 15, 2023
Contact: Marty Irby