The Republican-led House voted 300-131 last Wednesday to remove country-of-origin labels, known as COOL, on beef, pork and chicken sold in the United States, hoping to prevent a battle over the labels with Canada and Mexico. Comedian Bill Maher had some questions about this.

“How do you write that law in a way that explains it’s good for people?” Maher questioned Republicans on Real Time with Bill Maher last Friday night. “What do you name it— the Freedom From Information Act, the Don’t Worry Your Pretty Little Head About It Act?”


“I think I found the perfect slogan for the Republican Party, combining their two great goals: erasing meat labels and repealing the estate tax,” Maher said. “And that slogan is: eat s— and die.”

COOL was mandated by Congress in the 2002 and 2008 farm bills, which required meat packers to identify where animals are born, raised and slaughtered, and to print this information on meat packages sold in grocery stores. Canada and Mexico argue that COOL put their animals at a disadvantage, making it harder for them to trade.

“If Congress repeals COOL, then the next time consumers go shopping for a steak or chicken for their families, they won’t be able to tell where that product came from,” said Chris Waldrop, Director of the Food Policy Institute at Consumer Federation of America. “That’s completely unacceptable. Consumers want more information about their food, not less.”

“Next time you hear Republicans say they want to protect you from burdensome regulations, this is what they mean,” Maher said adding, “But this isn’t really deregulation, this is reverse regulation. Regulations are supposed to protect people from corporations, not corporations from people.”

Watch the rest of the segment below:


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