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Genetically engineered food labeling initiative tied in poll [Google+ Hangout]

October 25, 2012|By Marc Lifsher

SACRAMENTO --The campaign to pass Proposition 37 -- the genetically engineered food labeling initiative -- is locked in a tight fight with its agribusiness and food manufacturing opponents.

A commanding lead with a more than two-to-one margin a month ago has shrunk to a 44% to 42% statistical tie, according to a USC Dornsife/ Los Angeles Times poll released Thursday. Read the story here.

LIVE VIDEO DISCUSSION: Join us at 2 p.m. today

But Proposition 37 supporters, including the organic food industry and consumer advocates, say they're still in the battle and are ready to strike back. They're launching television ads statewide in California beginning Friday that are scheduled to run until election day on Nov. 6.

The Times is hosting a live video chat at 2 p.m. PDT on Prop. 37. Columnist David Lazarus will be talking with Sacramento-based reporter Marc Lifsher, who has been covering Proposition 37. Joining them will be Ken Cook, executive director of the Environmental Working Group, which is supporting the Yes campaign, and No spokeswoman Kathy Fairbanks.

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"This is ours to win," said Yes spokeswoman Stacy Malkan. "Our polls show that when people see our message -- that we have a right to know what's in the food we're eating and feeding our families -- our numbers go back up."

Opponents, who have been waging a televised barrage of critical sports for the last month, say they're educating voters about the potential pitfalls of the proposed labeling law: allegedly higher food prices and more regulations on farmers and businesses.

"We've been encouraging voters to look into the details and evaluate whether they want to live with the consequences of Proposition 37," Fairbanks said. "The loss of support indicates they don't."


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