The Senate may have saved the food safety bill tonight. In a message this evening, the Senate stated:
Prior to adjourning, the Senate passed H.R.2751, as amended by the text of S. 510 (with Tester/Hagen Amendment) minus the offending blue slip provisions. The House now needs to vote to pass. It then needs to be signed by the President.
This is a vital measure, primarily for its demand of increased oversight of large food producers, its liberal extension of FDA’s mandate to inspect producers and act when faced with an outbreak or a food item known to be contaminated, and its demand, also, of more, and more effective, inspection of food products from abroad.
Only two more steps to go. Passage by the house, which must vote on essentially the same bill that it passed back in July 2009 (the original Senate food safety bill, S 510, was attached to a shell bill, HR 2751, which will serve as the vehicle to get the food safety bill back to the House); and the final step in constitutional presentment, signature by President Obama.