Top senator apologizes for ‘Monsanto Protection Act’ after public outrage


The blowback caused by a new law that lets biotech companies like Monsanto escape litigation is so tremendous that a senior senator from Maryland has offered the public an apology.

US Senator Barbara A. Mikulski (D-Md.) has issued a statement expressing her regret for letting this year’s Agriculture Appropriations bill — an annual continuing resolution spending act — be signed into law.

Top senator apologizes for 'Monsanto Protection Act' after public outrage

“Senator Mikulski understands the anger over this provision. She didn’t put the language in the bill and doesn’t support it either,” begins a statement from her office dated Friday, March 29.

As RT reported earlier, President Barack Obama inked his name last Tuesday to the bill, H.R. 933, and in doing so signed off on a deal that essentially prevented a government-wide shut down. In doing as much, though, the president approved a provision that lets the companies that make genetically modified organisms (GMOs) and genetically engineered (GE) seeds step over legal hurdles in the future regarding lab-made products that may later be proven to be dangerous.

Included in the bill is a rider, Section 735, which says federal courts cannot intervene and halt biotech companies from planting and selling GMO goods to the public, even if testing proves them to be potentially hazardous to the greater public. Because the legislation largely shields agriculture giants Monsanto from litigation, it has been dubbed by its critics the “Monsanto Protection Act.” But even after more than 250,000 people signed a petition asking the White House to intervene and ensure the bill was not passed, Pres. Obama nonetheless approved it last week.


Sen. Mikulski has served as chairwoman of the Senate Appropriations Committee since last December when she inherited the role after the passing of Sen. Dan Inouye (D-Hawaii). In a statement released by her office last week, a spokesperson suggests that Mikulski likely wouldn’t have let H.R. 933 end up the way it did had she ran the committee earlier.

“It was originally part of the Agriculture Appropriations bill that the House Appropriations Committee reported in June 2012, and it became part of the joint House-Senate agreement completed in the fall of 2012 before Senator Mikulski became Appropriations Chairwoman,” it reads.

“As Chairwoman of the Appropriations Committee, Senator Mikulski’s first responsibility was to prevent a government shutdown. That meant she had to compromise on many of her own priorities to get a bill through the Senate that the House would pass.”

Speaking to the Baltimore Sun this week, Colin O’Neil of the Center for Food Safety says his group hopes Mikulski won’t let any future provisions in the vein of the Monsanto Protection Act make it into law — and agrees that she likely didn’t support it.

“Her hands were tied by the negotiations that had previously happened,” O’Neil said. “We recognize that the tough spot she was in.”

Even so, however, O’Neil added that a person in Mikulski’s place would usually be expected to stop such provisions from being put into law. “The American public have relied on Senate Democrats to be a backstop against dangerous policy riders like this,” he said. “We call on [Mikulski] to ensure that this rider is stricken from any future appropriations bills.”

The statement from the senator’s spokesperson agrees as much. “Senator Mikulski has a strong food safety record. She has supported a bill requiring labeling of genetically engineered fish, an amendment to the Farm Bill that allows states to require labeling of edible foods and beverages for sale that contain genetically engineered ingredients and called for labeling of cloned animals or their progeny,” it reads. “She will continue to fight for a regular and timely Appropriations process and other valuable priorities, including food safety.”

In the interim, though, Congress and the president have indeed signed off on a bill that, despite objections a legion of hundreds of thousands of America, still was signed into law.

As RT noted last week, Sen. Roy Blunt (R-Missouri) has been credited with crafting the language of H.R. 933 by working directly alongside Monsanto. Blunt has received $64,250 from Monsanto towards his campaign committee between 2008 and 2012.


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8 Responses

  1. Adam says:

    Where is Anonymous right now? This would be a noble cause right now. I imagine computer systems play a integral part in genetic manipulation and GMO creation engineering. When a company becomes “above the law” then it forces the hand of folks who would rather work inside the parameters of law to look for other solutions. Industrial subterfuge comes to mind. If the authorities can’t stop these monsters maybe super intelligent motivated individuals could figure a way of halting their plans and culling the threat they have become. Might take a page from the WU or Bill Ayers’ organization. Don’t want to set off any bells and whiskles if you know what I mean.

  2. Archie1954 says:

    Blunt must be brought up on charges of selling his vote to the highest bidder. Why else would any Congressional member agree to sign on to and support such a rampantly dangerous bill?

  3. 5 War Veteran says:

    With all due respect to the “senator” and all the other “distinguished gentlemen” (translate as assholes) who allowed the bill to be approved. Apology not accepted. Accepting this is like accepting an apology from the murderer who killed your children.

    535 versus 315 million.

  4. M.J. Marsalek says:

    Barbara Mikulski’s apology is as totally unacceptable as the reason she offered for advancing the Monsanto Protection provision. Mikulski’s first priority is to insure the safety of the American people no matter what. Mikulski said that her first priority was to fund the ( waste, fraud abuse and total inefficiency of ) government instead of insuring food safety. The Monsanto Protection provision shields Monsanto from any product liability by barring consumer recourse for sickness and/or death resulting from GMO toxic food. Instead of apologizing, Mikulski should resign.

  5. Chaos says:

    ZOG GMO. Bow Down to your Six Point Masters! You did nothing to stop them for decades of Corruption and Crimes Against Humanity… now get down on your knees and GROVEL for the Food they hold a monopoly on. Worship the chosen people and they may allow you a morsel of bio-engineered poison to calm your hunger pains.

  6. Ravenmaven says:

    America has become a petri dish, and we have become the experiment.

    • doesntmatter says:

      acually we’ve been rats in a lab for some centuries now…some things are just finally coming to the light…

    • doesntmatter says:

      acually we’ve been rats in a lab for some centuries now…some things are just finally coming to the light…

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