Ohio voters will head to the polls Tuesday to vote on Issue 2, a ballot measure that could determine the future of animal agriculture practices in the state. The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) can be expected to pull out all the stops over the coming days to defeat the measure. Passage of Issue 2 will make it more difficult for animal rights groups to implement restrictive measures using the signature-driven ballot process.
Issue 2 creates a 13-member Livestock Care Standards Board that would include Ohio's agriculture director, family farmers, veterinarians, a representative of a local humane society and consumers. It is a move that could give farmers in rural America a blueprint for battling animal rights groups intent on outlawing many accepted agricultural practices. Interest in the outcome is high, especially in the Midwest. Animal rights groups, led by the HSUS, are targeting 24 states that allow signature-driven petitions to appear on their ballots.