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Animal Law Podcast #66: The Case of the California Sales Bans

By Mariann Sullivan — November 25, 2020

On this episode of the Animal Law Podcast, I welcome back Rebecca Cary of the Humane Society of the United States to speak with us about the recent decision from the Ninth Circuit in North American Meat Institute v Becerra, in which the court upheld Proposition 12 in the face of arguments by the plaintiff that it violates the Dormant Commerce Clause.

Proposition 12 is, of course, the California ballot initiative that, among other things, imposed a sales ban in California on products that don’t comply with certain California laws regarding the treatment of certain farmed animals. As we discuss on this episode, sales bans are a vital tool in protecting states’ ability to make their laws regarding the treatment of animals effective, and they are, as a result, vehemently opposed by animal use industries. This is an important case, indeed.

Rebecca Cary is a Senior Staff Attorney at The Humane Society of the United States, where she has worked since 2010 in the Animal Protection Litigation section. The bulk of her work focuses on farm animals and constitutional defense litigation. She graduated from Northeastern University School of Law in 2009, where she successfully petitioned the school to include an animal law class in its curriculum.


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