For both better and for worse, California has been home to cultural trends in the U.S. But now, it wants to become our country’s West Coast federal government.
In 2008, California voters passed an HSUS-supported ballot initiative called Proposition 2 to require more space for egg-laying hens. Understandably, California egg producers said such a rule would put them at a competitive disadvantage with the rest of the country. ‘No worries,’ said California legislators in 2010. ‘We won’t let any eggs into the state unless producers from other states comply with our state law.”
With implementation just around the corner (2015), Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster has filed a federal lawsuit against California saying the legislature’s action violates the U.S. Constitution’s Commerce Clause. Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller is considering joining Missouri on the matter, and for good reason: Iowa egg producers provide 30% of the eggs used in California, so letting the California legislature tell Iowa producers how to operate will have some serious economic consequences for the state.
Even more concerning is that the issue could start a “trade war” between states!
The lawsuit was necessitated by a failure in the 2014 Farm Bill. Iowa Representative Steve King had pushed an amendment that would have superseded state laws that tried to apply production standards outside their state boundaries. King’s amendment was not included, and now we’re headed to the courts.
I hope Iowa joins Missouri in its efforts to stop California’s efforts. One set of federal lawmakers in the country is enough.