For immediate release: 10/14/2014
Press contact: Kevin Stamps: 636-208-6570; email@example.com
Sustainable Agriculture Leaders File Election Contest for Amendment 1: Ballot Language Misleading and Prejudicial.
Demanding there should be justice at the ballot box, three of Missouri’s sustainable agriculture leaders filed litigation calling on the courts to set aside the August 6th, 2014, Constitutional Amendment 1 election.
Wes Shoemyer, President of the Missouri’s Food for America said he was proud to stand once again with Darvin Bentlage, Missouri Rural Crisis Center board member and Richard Oswald, President of Missouri Farmers Union in their fight for justice on the farm and in the rural communities. “We and our organizations are fighting hard for what’s right in agriculture and our rural communities. We took this action to insure our citizens are protected from the misleading tactics we have seen throughout this fight,” said Shoemyer. Constitutional Amendment 1, the so called “Right to Farm”, was narrowly passed by the voters; a margin of less than 2,400 votes out of nearly 1,000,000 cast.
In their petition they state that the summary statement that the voters read at the ballot box “…was insufficient, misleading, prejudicial, and unfair so as to constitute election irregularities of a sufficient magnitude to set aside the election results on Constitutional Amendment No. 1.”
The actual constitutional language referred to “farmers and ranchers,” while the ballot summary stated it was a right of Missouri citizens. During the campaign it became abundantly clear that the proponent’s intent was to allow for foreign corporations and individuals to have certain rights in Missouri’s Constitution and not just Missouri Citizens.