Protesters throw money at GMO vote

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DES MOINES, Iowa (KCRG-TV9) -- The U.S. Senate managed to pass a procedural cloture vote on GMO labeling, setting up a possible final vote.

But after the votes were tallied, some protesters interrupted

Throwing two thousand dollars in cash and shouting "Monsanto Money", the disruption was a protest against the compromise labeling bill.

Protestors call the bill the DARK Act (Deny Americans the Right to Know). In a release, the Organic Consumers Association says the bill has no enforcement, so the labeling would essentially be voluntary. They say the thrown money was intended to highlight senators voting against the interests of the people.

The bill passed 65 to 32 to limit debate and preempts state laws requiring labeling of genetically modified foods, establishing a federal mandatory disclosure system.

The compromise was finally reached after months of debate between Senate Agriculture Committee Chairman Pat Roberts and the committee's ranking Democrat Debbie Stabenow.

In his weekly conference call, Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley says Iowa needs the bill to prevent a patchwork of state labeling laws.

But the mandatory aspect was a big concession of many Republicans, who wanted a voluntary label.
Grassley says a compromise is a compromise, "This is the third try, and it's better than letting 50 different state laws go into effect and not having any uniformity. So that's a big problem for national manufacturers and retailers."

Grassley says the bill is important for processors in Iowa to know they just need one label for all 50 states.