After efforts to label genetically engineered foods failed in Oregon and Colorado, Politico’s Jenny Hopkinson tweeted, “For those keeping score: the food and biotech industries are now 4-0 on GMO labeling ballot initiatives.”

First California, then Washington last year, now Oregon and Colorado. And actually there was a fifth: Back in 2002 Oregon tried and failed to label GMOs. There’s an unmistakable pattern here. When I asked Stuart Elway, president of the Seattle-based polling firm Elway Research, what he saw in the numbers, he said it was déjà vu.

“It was polling pretty high, then in the last month it was like I was looking at the Washington experience again: It cratered and lost,” Elway said. “This pattern repeats itself. People initially think it’s a good idea without considering it much, then the campaign against the initiative comes in and spends a gazillion dollars, and they start to have second thoughts.”