March, 23rd 2012

New effort to limit farm subsidies?

– Liz Mair

In my inbox, from Sen. Mike Enzi's office:

[...] The Rural America Preservation Act of 2012 would limit annual per farm commodity subsidy payments and marketing loans to $250,000 for married couples. Individual farmers would be capped at $150,000. 


“There’s no better time than when our nation is in deep debt to stop making payments to people who don’t need it.  Under the current system the federal government is making payments to people who don’t farm.  This bill would change that,” Enzi said.

Enzi said the Rural America Preservation Act would save money and he hopes it will be included in this year’s Farm Bill. [...]

On the face of it, this sounds like a good bill, though I'll be reading up further on it and ascertaining more details. One thing that is notable, and perhaps curious: The bill is sponsored by Chuck Grassley, and co-sponsored by Ben Nelson and Tom Harkin. These guys represent farming states where I imagine some folks might be opposed to any limitation of farm subdidies. That leaves me wondering what the story is there. Worth noting also that the bill is backed by Tim Johnson, Sherrod Brown and Kirsten Gillibrand-- proving in Brown's case (IMO) that even a broken clock is right (or at least looks like it on first glance) twice a day. [intro]



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