September 20, 2023

Animals Approach the Bench

Washington, DC, United States

This spring, animals won big at the U.S. Supreme Court. In National Pork Producers Council v. Ross, the Court rejected a constitutional challenge to California’s Proposition 12—a state ballot initiative prohibiting the sale of pork made from pigs confined in enclosures so tight that they are unable to turn around. Proposition 12 was defended by a team of trial and appellate lawyers—some of whom worked on the case for years—from the government, private practice, and nonprofit organizations.

Three of those lawyers will join us to discuss how the case reached the Supreme Court, how they successfully defended the law, and what’s next in the fight for access to products that are safer and more humanely produced.

  • Rebecca Cary (Special Counsel, The Humane Society of the United States): Served as HSUS’s lead counsel in the case;
  • Jeff Lamken (Founder, MoloLamken): Argued the Supreme Court case on behalf of the animal-welfare intervenor groups; and
  • Rucha Desai (Fairmark Partners, LLP): Filed a Supreme Court amicus brief, in defense of Proposition 12, on behalf of small and independent farming businesses, state farmers unions, and farm advocacy groups.

Our moderator is Nancy Perry, Senior VP of Government Relations at the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and an Adjunct Professor at GW Law.