Secretary of State: Right to Farm Vote to Undergo Recount

Secretary of State Jason Kander announced today the Amendment 1 vote, which resulted in a razor-thin victory for Right to Farm supporters, will undergo a recount.

The recount was requested by Wes Shoemyer with Missouri Food for America, a leading opponent of the ballot measure. Out of nearly 1 million votes, the amendment passed by 2,490, a margin of about 0.25 percent.

The recount was expected after Amendment 1 opponents called for one Monday evening. According to Kander’s office, the recount is expected to be completed by Sept. 15.

“My goal is to set the standard for an open, transparent and fair recount process,” Kander said in a statement. “Recounts are in place to both ensure the integrity of elections and give Missourians confidence in the results, which is why I put an emphasis on new transparency measures.”

Recounts may be requested when the result is separated by less than one half of one percent on the votes cast.

“With such a close margin, we owe it, not just to all the volunteers and organizations who put in countless hours fighting for Missouri’s family farmers, but also to the 497,091 people who voted ‘no’ on August 5th,” Shoemyer said in a statement.

The measure was favored in most rural counties, but opposition in the St. Louis, Kansas City, Springfield and Columbia areas was nearly enough to offset it. Right to Farm opponents had said earlier this month that they were weighing the possibility of a recount and on Monday officially requested one.

The amendment declares farming a right at the state level. It is part of an effort to fortify the agricultural industry against animal-welfare activists and opponents of genetically modified crops, who fear the amendment will be used by corporate farms to escape unwanted regulations such as pollution control.

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Source: Springfield News Leader