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Monday, May 23, 2005

Where's the Beef?

From CQ Today's Midday Report (by email):
The Supreme Court today upheld a 1985 federal law requiring beef producers to pay a $1-per-head fee to support a multimillion-dollar “Beef: It’s what’s for dinner” marketing program.” The 5-4 decision is a defeat for farmers in several agricultural sectors who oppose paying mandatory fees for generic advertising, the Associated Press noted.

Currently, there are dozens of similar federal and state ad campaigns for products including milk, pork and cotton, many of which are being challenged on free speech grounds. The beef campaign is a form of “government speech” immune to First Amendment challenge, the court said.