Ag-Gag Opponents Prepare for February Federal Court Hearing in Boise

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Opponents of Idaho's so-called Ag-Gag law, which criminalizes "interference" with Gem State agricultural operations, say they're anxious to argue against the measure in a federal courtroom in Boise next month.

U.S. District Judge B. Lynn Winmill has preserved the Animal Legal Defense Fund's First Amendment challenge to the Ag-Gag law, and has scheduled a hearing for Tuesday, Feb. 17, at the U.S. Courthouse in Boise. Opponents call the law unconstitutional and tell KLEW-TV that the state's reasons for enacting the law are invalid.

"What they're really concerned about is the exposure of horrific practices that cause immense animal suffering," said ALDF attorney Matthew Liebman. "And they know if the public sees that sort of treatment of animals it will affect their bottom line."

Advocates for the law said it was meant to protect agricultural interests, but its detractors described it as a solution waiting for a problem, and that it curtails free speech rights and discourages independent oversight of ag practices. 



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