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Greg Martin 10/19/05 R-CALF USA to battle on
by Greg Martin, click here for bio

Program: Line on Agriculture
Date: October 19, 2005

The latest set back in R-C.A.L.F. U.S.A.s plans to stop Canadian live cattle and specified beef products from coming into the U.S. once again came this week. A panel of the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals agreed not to hear the organizations appeal of a previous Ninth Circuit decision to overturn a federal judges preliminary injunction to keep the border closed to Canadian cattle and beef due to b.s.e concerns. That was good news to our neighbors to the north such as Stan Eby of the Canadian Cattlemens Association.

EBY: Our legal counsel tells us that the number of rehearings held in other cases is extremely small.

So, as has been for the last two months, Canadian live cattle and selected beef continues to come into the U.S. As for R-C.A.L.F. U.S.A., the Ninth Circuit decision not to rehear the case was a disappointment but only a small one in the overall scheme of things. Again, the Ninth Circuit matter focused on the preliminary injunction. R-C.A.L.F. U.S.A. C.E.O. Bill Bullard says his group still has that case in U.S. District Court in Montana calling for a permanent injunction banning Canadian cattle and beef.

BULLARD: What we would do is pursue the completion of our case in the District Court and hopefully convince the District Court that they previous decision issued by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals doesnt in any way affect the District Courts ability to render a decision that will be important to this industry in terms of protecting the health and safety standards.

District Court Judge Richard Cebull put the hearing on the permanent injunction on hold in June pending the outcome of the temporary injunction motion before the Ninth Circuit. And according to Brad Wildeman of the Canadian Cattlemens Association, the Appellate Courts rulings and orders should make Cebulls decision clearer.

WILDEMAN: Lets get this thing over with. He still hasnt made a decision on whether hes prepared to sort of hear the permanent injunction thing. I think the message is pretty clear that theres no reason to do that.

But Bullard and other R-C.A.L.F. leaders remain confident that if the case is heard, Cebull will find that U.S.D.A.s final rule resuming Canadian live cattle and beef imports into our nation is premature, given both the existing science on b.s.e., and Canadas current track record with cases of Mad Cow Disease. R-C.A.L.F. U.S.A. President Leo McDonnell says whats fair is fair.

MCDONNELL: Basically, what were asking of imports from Canada is the same thing that Canadas asked of every other country thats had b.s.e. But theres a lot of politics that play into this deal.

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