Calif. 'Frankenfood' Bill in Death Spiral After Ad War
Opponents spend $46M in GMO labeling battle
By Matt Cantor, Newser User
Posted Nov 5, 2012 6:27 AM CST
Updated Nov 5, 2012 7:40 AM CST
This Sept. 30, 2002 file photo shows labeling advertising no genetically engineered ingredients.   (AP Photo/Paul Sakuma, File)

(Newser) – At first, advocates for California's Proposition 37 seemed to be skipping off to victory—but with the vote approaching, it now appears that opponents have engineered a stunning turnaround. Monsanto, DuPont, and Pepsi have spent some $46 million against the measure, which would require the labeling of genetically-modified food. In a raft of television ads, opponents argue that it would hike family grocery bills by $400 a year while hurting farmers. And the ads seem to have worked: A month ago, some two-thirds of likely voters supported the measure; now, just 39% support it, while 51% oppose it.

The "No on 37" campaign is among California's best-funded ballot battles ever, Reuters notes. Opponents have spent about six times what advocates have spent. It's been compared to the fight against a proposed tobacco tax measure earlier this year, which was defeated despite initially having 70% support. An anti-smoking activist says in both cases, ads weren't "arguing with the premise of the initiatives, but rather making picky criticisms of the details of the initiatives."

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Showing 3 of 42 comments
viva_yo
Nov 5, 2012 11:24 PM CST
I go out of my way to buy foods which specifically state that they're not produced from any of this crap. These same companies are trying to stop people from having gardens & trying to keep people from selling any produce not given the corporate imprimatur. If I were a religious person, I might refer to Revelations where it mentions that "nothing could be bought or sold with out the Sign of the Beast". This is what all of this reminds me of. Why are all those Republican bible-tumpers now?
YetAnotherCollegeKid
Nov 5, 2012 11:00 PM CST
They keep taking swings at capitalist royalty, and they keep missing. If the corps are winning because they had picky little things to criticize, don't give them those little things. A bill aiming this high should be airtight. If it's not, they will eat you. This Proposition is exhibit A.
TristramShandy
Nov 5, 2012 6:20 PM CST
Proposition 37 is poorly written and leaves huge loopholes when it comes to what industries would have to have labels. I already voted and I voted for every Democratic endorsed proposition except getting rid of the death penalty and this one. Labeling GMOs is a good idea - - if it is done well. This proposition isn't.