Arguing California’s Proposition 12: An Expert Panel Led by Jon Lovvorn

Oct. 13, 2022
12:15PM - 1:15PM
Open to the Public

In 2018, California voters passed Proposition 12, a ballot initiative banning the intensive confinement of egg-laying chickens, mother pigs, and veal calves raised in California and prohibiting the sale of eggs, pork, and veal in California from facilities anywhere using those practices. After multiple unsuccessful attempts by meat and egg industry trade groups to challenge the law, the Supreme Court will hear arguments on the constitutionality of Proposition 12 on October 11 (National Pork Producers Council v. Ross). The National Pork Producers Council and the American Farm Bureau Federation argue that California is unconstitutionally regulating interstate commerce.  

The Law, Ethics & Animals Program will host a distinguished panel to discuss the case and its potential impacts just two days after oral arguments. This discussion, led by LEAP Faculty Co-Director Jon Lovvorn, will feature Amy Chyao of the Humane Society of the United States, Rucha A. Desai of Fairmark Partners, LLP, and Brian Frazelle (YLS ‘10) of the Constitutional Accountability Center, who all filed amicus briefs in support of Proposition 12 in the case. Together, they will  explore some of the far-reaching consequences of this case, not only for nonhuman animal welfare, but also for human health, labor rights, states’ power to regulate commerce within their borders, and beyond. 

Jon Lovvorn is Faculty Co-Director of the Law, Ethics & Animals Program at Yale Law School, a Senior Research Scholar, and Lecturer in Law. He also serves as Chief Counsel for Animal Protection Litigation for the Humane Society of the United States, and as a board member and/or legal advisor to other animal and environmental protection organizations.

Amy Chyao is the Supreme Court Litigation Fellow with the Humane Society of the United States. She oversaw the development of an amicus brief discussing the public health and food safety issues related to Prop 12. Prior to working with HSUS, she was an associate attorney with Earthjustice. She received her JD from Harvard Law School.

Rucha A. Desai is an attorney with Fairmark Partners, LLP, where she specializes in antitrust litigation, and focuses on sustainability, factory farming, and greenwashing issues.  She represents amici small and independent farming businesses, state farmers unions, and farm advocacy organizations that are in support of Proposition 12.  The amicus brief argues that Proposition 12 will promote diversity of production, and expand, rather than constrict, market opportunities for many pork producers.  She received her JD from NYU School of Law in 2016.

Brian Frazelle (YLS ‘10) is a Senior Appellate Counsel at the Constitutional Accountability Center (CAC), which submitted an amici curiae brief on behalf of law professors support of Proposition 12. Prior to joining CAC, Brian was an attorney at the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board and held a fellowship at Public Citizen Litigation Group.

Sponsoring Organization(s)

The Law, Ethics & Animals Program. This event is co-sponsored by the Yale Animal Law Society, the Yale Environmental Law Association, and the Yale Sustainable Food Program.