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Here's a New One: Prop 2 Supporters Sue Themselves!

In California, supporters of Prop 2, a Humane Society-backed ballot initiative to regulate how farm animals are confined, appear to have made a little bit of legal history. Earlier this month, they essentially sued themselves in an attempt to change their own ballot argument in favor of the measure.

The lawsuit, which is attached below, makes for odd reading. The language of the lawsuit sounds almost apologetic, asking for a "very minor change" (italics not mine) in both the ballot argument and the rebuttal to the "no" side's argument. Technically, the supporters are suing the Secretary of State, but they're suing the Secretary of State to change something they themselves wrote. The reason for the filing? To avoid voter confusion, the lawsuit says.

It appears that Humane Society folks thought they had lined up support for Prop 2 from some leading Catholics, but got pushback from church officials when the ballot argument said that Catholic leaders had endorsed the measure. The church itself has not. One Catholic group that endorsed the measure, the California Veterinary Medicine Association, also seems to be unhappy with one part of the ballot argument.

The Humane Society of the United States has a stronger record of success in ballot measures than any other interest group in the country. But this suggests that their California campaign is having some hiccups.

Pacelle v Bowen - petition.pdf413.38 KB

Vote YES on Prop 2 in California

Proposition 2 is a moderate measure that stops cruel and inhumane treatment of animals — ending the practice of cramming farm animals into cages so small the animals can't even turn around or stretch their limbs. It’s supported by the Humane Society of the United States, Center for Food Safety, the California Veterinary Medical Association, the Consumer Federation of America, and the United Farm Workers.

Voter Confusion?

I would say that this would only enhance the voter confusion. There have to be simpler ways to fix this problem. A lawsuit will just draw out the process.

People should come first.

With food prices are record levels and with the national economy heading into recession do we really raise the price of eggs by 76%? With 6-12 million Californians forced to skip a meal each day because they don't have enough money why would we make food even more expensive when we don't have to? UC Davis did a nonpartisan study and determined that 98% of chicken & egg farmers would move out of state if this proposition came into effect because the projected 76% increase in farm costs simply would make all chicken and egg farming in California unprofitable. Let's keep locally grown farm goods in our local markets and let's keep food prices low so fewer of our neighbors end up going hungry.


Scare tactics promulgated by the industry. We won't starve if the cages are widened a bit. I already buy cage free chicken eggs and they're about a buck more and this will go down with competition. Other states such as Arizona already enacted a similar measure and nobody's going hungry as a result of it. Even if eggs, beef and pork suddenly disappeared off our market shelves, it doesn't mean people would go hungry-- as if there aren't other (and actually more healthful) culinary alternatives in the Land of Plenty.
The farm factory industry is devoting some 10 million to defeating this measure and their rhetoric will rise as November approaches.

Catholic Leaders

I am a practicing Roman Catholic and very proud to have a YES of PROP 2 sticker on the back of my car! The National Catholic Rural Life Conference took a stand in support of this measure, so I am not confused a bit, though I assume not all Catholic leaders will take a stand on it.
How I wish they would. It's a very, very simple and basic measure to slightly enlarge the cages of farm animals so they could have a little moving room.
All the canonized saints I ever studied were great friends of the creatures of God.

How would you like to spend

How would you like to spend your whole life in a cage, with no room to move, lay down comfortably and to enjoy the outside. How cruel our we as a socoity that we can not treat animals the same as we would ourselves.