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Dr. Coburn Votes to Ban Japanese Beef Imports

Location: Washington, DC

Dr. Coburn Votes to Ban Japanese Beef Imports

U.S. Sen. Tom Coburn, M.D. (R-OK) released the following statement today regarding his vote in favor of an amendment that prohibits the use of funds by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) from developing a final rule with respect to the importation of Japanese beef.

The amendment to H.R. 2744 passed by a vote of 72-26.

"Oklahoma beef products are among the safest in the world. It is unfair to our cattlemen and ranchers to be denied the opportunity to sell their products in Japan but allow products from that country to be sold in this country," Dr. Coburn said. "The USDA has proven beyond any doubt American beef is safe. It's time that market be reopened to Oklahoma beef."

Dr. Coburn noted, "It is preposterous to consider opening up our markets to Japanese beef if American beef products are denied entry into that country. I urge Agriculture Secretary Mike Johanns and the Administration not to accept any new arrangements with Japan until American beef producers are granted a level playing field. The time has come for Japan to reopen its markets to safe American beef. We must send a clear message we intend to protect American beef producers."

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