02-27-2020  12:50 pm   •   PDX Weather    •   SEA weather  
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NORTHWEST NEWS

PHOTOS: Elizabeth Warren Rallies in Seattle

Washington state’s primary is Tuesday, March 10; voters should have received their ballots by Thursday, Feb. 27

Support for Black Reparations Grows in Congress

The Commission to Study and Develop Reparations Proposals for African-Americans Act now has 125 cosponsors

Shifting Demographics Drive GOP Nosedive on US West Coast

Political districts have flipped in population centers, from San Diego in the south to Seattle in the north

'A World of Hurt': 39 States to Investigate JUUL's Marketing

Oregon is one of five states leading a bipartisan coalition looking into JUUL’s targeting of youth vaping

NEWS BRIEFS

Washington’s March 10 Presidential Primary Ballots Mailed to Voters

Voters required to make party declaration for this election only ...

State and Federal Agencies Aid Sunken Tugboat in Columbia River

Divers plugged fuel vents this afternoon and the vessel is not actively leaking ...

Multnomah County Promotes Voter Education Project

Multnomah County is partnering with National Association of Secretary of States (NASS) to promote #TRUSTEDINFO2020 ...

New Travel Ban Takes Effect, National Groups Respond

The expansion of the Muslim ban targets more Black immigrants ...

Harris, Booker Applaud House For Announcing Vote on Anti-Lynching Legislation

After passing the House, the bill will head to the president’s desk to be signed into law ...

Missing fisherman found dead in Newport Bay

NEWPORT, Ore. (AP) — A body found in Newport Bay has been identified as that of a fisherman who has been missing for nearly three weeks, the Newport Police Department said Thursday.Norman Grant was reported missing on Feb. 9 and hadn't been seen since the evening of Feb. 8, Chief Jason...

Suburban Seattle high school closed over new virus concerns

BOTHELL, Wash. (AP) — A suburban Seattle high school was closed Thursday after a staffer's family member was placed in quarantine for showing symptoms of possibly contracting the new virus that started in China - an action health officials say is unnecessary.Bothell High school, bout 20...

Former AD, All-American center Dick Tamburo dies at 90

EAST LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Dick Tamburo, an athletic director at three major schools and an All-American center at Michigan State, has died. He was 90.Michigan State announced that Tamburo died Monday.A native of New Kensington, Pennsylvania, Tamburo served as the athletic director at Texas...

OPINION

Black America is Facing a Housing Crisis

As the cost of housing soars the homeless population jumps 12 percent, the number of people renting grows and homeownership falls ...

Trump Expands Muslim Ban to Target Africans

Under the new ban on countries, four out of five people who will be excluded are Africans ...

Martin Luther King Day is an Opportunity for Service

Find out where you can volunteer and make a difference to the community ...

Looking to 2020 — Put Your Vote to WORK!

Ronald Reagan, who turned his back on organized labor and started America’s middle-class into a tailspin, has recently been voted by this administration’s NLRB into the Labor Hall of Fame ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Top nominee Polanski to skip French Oscars after rape claim

PARIS (AP) — Filmmaker Roman Polanski is skipping the awards ceremony for France's equivalent of the Oscars — where his latest movie leads this year's nominations — because of protests prompted by a new rape accusation against him.Women's rights activists have called for a...

MLB appoints 1st black umpire crew chief

NEW YORK (AP) — Kerwin Danley became the first African American umpire crew chief in Major League Baseball when a series of promotions, additions and retirements were announced Thursday.The moves included Alfonso Marquez being elevated to the first Hispanic crew chief in MLB history born...

Kosovo offers to ease tariff on neighboring Serbia's goods

PRISTINA, Kosovo (AP) — Kosovo's new prime minister said Thursday his government will partially lift a 100% tariff imposed on Serbian goods, in a goodwill move aimed to help restart suspended talks with Serbia on normalizing relations.Albin Kurti said the measure would come into effect from...

ENTERTAINMENT

Kids shine as Broadway's 'To Kill a Mockingbird' goes big

NEW YORK (AP) — The cast of “To Kill a Mockingbird” ditched its somber Broadway home Wednesday for the cavernous Madison Square Garden, performing the play for 18,000 school kids in an electric one-time-only performance that one actor called “primal.”It marks the...

Higdon opera for Philadelphia to have 3 different endings

Jennifer Higdon has been commissioned by Opera Philadelphia to compose "Woman with Eyes Closed," which will open the company's O20 Festival on Sept. 17 and in a novel twist will feature three different endings.Higdon, winner of the 2010 Pulitzer Prize for Music and a three-time Grammy Award winner,...

A rebel yell: Billy Idol stars in New York anti-idling ads

NEW YORK (AP) — Rocker Billy Idol is the face of an anti-idling campaign launched Thursday in New York City.“Billy never idles, so why should you?” the '80s MTV star growls in a public service announcement intended to shame New Yorkers into shutting the engine off. The...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

Nazi cautionary dramas wade into political, factual disputes

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Hollywood mustered its creative forces in the 1940s when Adolf Hitler's Nazi Germany...

About 40% of US adults are obese, government survey finds

NEW YORK (AP) — About 4 in 10 American adults are obese, and nearly 1 in 10 is severely so, government...

Former Michigan wrestlers urge more victims to 'speak up'

SOUTHFIELD, Mich. (AP) — The whistleblower whose letter to University of Michigan athletic director Warde...

Putin rejected offer to use body doubles during Chechen war

MOSCOW (AP) — Russian President Vladimir Putin said he had rejected an offer to use body doubles for...

Syrian opposition fighters retake key town, cut highway

BEIRUT (AP) — Turkey-backed Syrian opposition fighters retook a strategic northwestern town from government...

3,000-strong African force planned against Sahel extremism

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia (AP) — African leaders have decided to work on deploying 3,000 troops to West...

McMenamins
By Eliott C. Mclaughlin CNN

Washington was billed as the national testing ground on the issue of genetically modified foods, which draws spirited supporters and detractors into the debate over their effects on human health and the environment.

If the state's vote tally is to be believed, it appears the Evergreen State won't get special labeling for GMO foods, as expected before the Tuesday vote.

Those in favor of the initiative, however, say don't count your genetically engineered chickens before they hatch, according to a news release that reads rather victoriously, considering the Washington secretary of state's office says the measure failed 55% to 45%.

"The campaign remains confident that a majority of Washington voters support labeling of genetically engineered foods, and optimistic about supporters getting out to vote in this off-year election," said the Yes on Initiative 522 release.

"For now, the votes are too close to call," reads the Yes on I-522 landing page. "Over the next few days more ballots will be counted and we will keep you posted as we learn more."

The secretary of state's website says 100% of the vote has been counted.

The vote, if confirmed, would mark a defeat for those who say GMO foods may pose health risks and lead to a spike in herbicide and pesticide usage. The Elway Poll in October reported that Washington voters were in favor of the initiative by four percentage points.

The vote would have made Washington the third state to require GMO labeling and the first to pass an initiative that will go into effect regardless of whether other states enact similar laws.

Placed on the ballot after Washington voters submitted more than 350,000 signatures, I-522 "would require most raw agricultural commodities, processed foods, and seeds and seed stocks, if produced using genetic engineering as defined, to be labeled as genetically engineered when offered for retail sale."

Yes on I-522 says it is "motivated by a very simple principle: People have the right to know what's in the food they eat and feed their families."

Sixty-four countries have passed laws allowing consumers to know when there are GMO ingredients in their food, according to the Center for Food Safety. The watchdog group says the "limited data" on GMO foods indicates that the foods lead to higher risks of "toxicity, allergenicity, antibiotic resistance and immune suppression."

Since genetically engineered foods entered the U.S. market, herbicide use on corn, soybeans and cotton has increased by 527 million pounds, the center said, citing a study by Environmental Science Europe.

Monsanto, a Missouri-based agricultural giant that was staunchly opposed to the measure, says on its website, GMOanswers.com, that the crops have led to lower pesticide usage. The company says it's also invested more than $100 million to ensure the products are safe.

"Humans, over our history, have altered all of our crops, often for taste or yield or disease resistance," the website says.

"Before they reach the market, crops from GM seeds are studied extensively to make sure they are safe for people, animals and the environment," the Monsanto site adds. "Today's GM products are the most researched and tested agricultural products in history."

Opponents spent more than $22 million to fight the legislation -- more than triple what those in favor of labeling spent -- with only $600 of that money coming from within the state. Monsanto contributed more than $5 million, the Washington Public Disclosure Commission said.

Twenty-three states have pending legislation regarding GMO labeling, according to the group Right to Know GMO. Maine and Connecticut in June passed laws requiring labeling, but they won't go into effect until other states pass GMO-labeling laws.

California last year shot down such a law with 51.4% of voters casting ballots against it.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture Food Safety and Inspection Service approved a non-GMO label for meat and liquid egg products in June, the first time the department has approved such a label from a third party. GMO foods were approved for human consumption in 1995, but the Food and Drug Administration never required any labels pointing them out as such.

CNN's Greg Botelho contributed to this report.

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