"Dolphin Safe" Label Remains Intact

In late April, a three-judge panel of the Ninth US Circuit Court of Appeals refused to permit the Bush Administration to weaken the "Dolphin Safe" tuna label, criticizing the US Department of Commerce’s failure to base its findings on science. The Administration has been trying for years to alter the Marine Mammal Protection Act to ease rules for the foreign fishing industry and allow tuna caught with dangerous purse seine nets in Mexico to be imported to the United States under a false "Dolphin Safe" label. Following the unanimous decision against this proposal, District Court Judge Thelton Henderson stated, "[T]his court has never, in its 24 years, reviewed a record of an agency action that contained such a compelling portrait of political meddling."