Issue 2 (was) a constitutional amendment to create a 13-member Livestock Care Standards Board to prescribe standards for animal care and well-being that endeavor to maintain food safety, encourage locally grown and raised food, and protect Ohio farms and families.
The measure passed.
Many supporters of limited government argued that supporting this government expansion would prevent the United States Humane Society (USHS) from submitting their own, more restrictive language as a ballot issue.
The Ohio Farm Bureau supported Issue 2 for this reason, as one commenter on their website added:
To me, it is far more desirable to have guidelines established by Ohio experts for Ohio farms, than to have mandates created by out-of-state lobbying groups. Ohio's farm community is unique to our state. We have concerns that are quite different than circumstances in other states. Thus, I believe it is an excellent idea to create a board that can proactively set guidelines to ensure the well-being of Ohio's livestock, while at the same time providing more information to Ohio's consumers to promote confidence in their local food source.
This summarizes, very nicely, the position many limited government advocates took.
Of course, as I stated at the time, nothing in this constitutional amendment prevented the USHS from going forward with their own plans for Ohio, no matter how much supporters wanted to deceive themselves.
Well, now comes the USHS with exactly what Ohio voters were warned about. From the Columbus Dispatch:
U.S. humane society plans own anti-cruelty ballot issue
The Humane Society of the United States, which last fall opposed the successful constitutional amendment setting up standards for domestic livestock care, plans to go to the ballot this fall with its own counter-measure.
Ohioans for Humane Farms submitted a petition today to the Ohio secretary of state with signatures from Ohio voters in 48 counties to place an anti-cruelty measure on the November ballot.
If the petition is approved, the group will have to gather 402,275 valid signatures of registered Ohio voters from 44 of 48 counties to get on the ballot.
The group wants to require the Ohio Livestock Care Standards Board which was created by passage of Issue 2 last fall to adopt "certain minimum standards that will prevent the cruel and inhumane treatment of farm animals, enhance food safety, protect the environment and strengthen Ohio family farms."
The group says it is supported by a number of groups, including the several county humane societies, the United Farm Workers and Consumer Federation of America.
As I explained back in October: having supported one form of government intrusion into the area, Issue 2 supporters will be hard pressed to oppose any other form.
So what are the proponents of Issue 2 going to do now?
Don't say you weren't warned.