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Dispatches from public radio's correspondent at the Washington Legislature. Austin Jenkins is the Olympia correspondent for the Northwest News Network. You can also see Austin on television as host of TVW's (the C–SPAN of Washington State) weekly public affairs program "Inside Olympia."

Results Of Washington's GMO Labeling Vote To Reverberate Nationwide

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Results of a ballot measure in Tuesday’s election in Washington to require labeling of food containing genetically modified ingredients will reverberate throughout the nation’s food industry.

Opponents of this GMO labeling initiative have spent upwards of $22 million in order to defeat it in Washington. They do not want GMO labeling to get a toe hold here and spread to other states -- or perhaps nationwide.

Regardless of the results of the vote in Washington on Initiative 522, it is also clear that proponents of GMO labeling are just starting their fight. They intend to go to Oregon next and this is far from the last we’ve heard of this issue.

Washington voters have until 8 p.m. to get their ballot to a drop box or post marked in the mail, but people have been voting for two and a half weeks. State elections officials say they expect more than half the ballots in Tuesday’s election will be tallied before 9 p.m.

Since January 2004, Austin Jenkins has been the Olympia-based political reporter for the Northwest News Network. In that position, Austin covers Northwest politics and public policy, as well as the Washington State Legislature. You can also see Austin on television as host of TVW's (the C–SPAN of Washington State) Emmy-nominated public affairs program "Inside Olympia."