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By Andy Netzel, Houston Chronicle Knight Ridder/Tribune Business News
May 27--WASHINGTON--Advocates of tougher laws to ensure safer foods are hoping Canada's recent scare with mad cow disease might spur Congress into action.
A bill reintroduced to the Senate last week by Sen. Tom Harkin, D-Iowa, would give the U.S. Department of Agriculture broader authority to enforce health standards already in place.
"If we can shut down the Canadian border with the threat of mad cow disease, but we can't shut down a plant, what does that say about the way we protect our food supply?" Harkin asked.
As it is now, the Agriculture Department can …