Washington, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senator Bob Casey (D-PA) released the following statement on his vote regarding the GMO labeling bill:
“Today, I voted against ending debate on the Roberts bill to create a national bioengineered food labeling standard, as I voted against a similar proposal during the recent markup in the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry. I support a national standard for GMO labeling provided that it is paired with specific disclosure requirements that provide consumers with the information they need to make an informed decision about the foods they eat. The Roberts bill, because it does not provide consumers with a direct link to the information they seek, is not a compromise. A one-sided bill on the Senate floor, which Republicans call a compromise, does not make it a true compromise.
“The food and agriculture industry has made a compelling argument that, in this case, a uniform national standard is necessary to avoid confusion and increased cost in the marketplace as well as chaos in distribution channels, especially for a state like Pennsylvania which produces and distributes much of the food for the Northeast and mid-Atlantic states. The labeling should provide genuine disclosure and require companies to provide consumers with information about whether the foods they are buying contain GMOs in an understandable and accessible format.
“During this Congress, the Senate has achieved agreement on substantial pieces of legislation, like reform of our education system, when Republicans and Democrats work together to find agreement. Those successes were rooted in genuine bipartisan compromise and stand in stark contrast to a process of filing cloture on a bill and forcing a vote. I will continue to engage with Senators on both sides to achieve a commonsense agreement on the issue of GMO labeling that can satisfy consumers’ desire to have readily accessible information about the food they consume and the market needs of the food industry.”