Farm Bill: Agriculture’s “Waning” Influence?
A couple of recent headlines have suggested that the political influence of American agricultural is “waning.” (“Agriculture’s Waning Influence In Washington Hinders Farmers,” National Public Radio; “Farm Bill Defeat Shows Agriculture’s Waning Power,” The New York Times).
However, on Wednesday’s AgriTalk radio program with Mike Adams, Nebraska GOP Senator Mike Johanns noted that, “I really want to say to people involved in agriculture, let’s not get down on ourselves– start convincing ourselves that we have lost political influence.
“I just think it is tough these days in every area. We’ve got budget constraints- I said two years ago the story of this Farm Bill is going to be budget constraints and it is. It just is the reality of our time.”
The former Sec. of Agriculture added that, “We are not that far off, and getting a five-year Farm Bill done would be a very significant accomplishment.” (Related audio from Wednesday’s AgritTalk program is available here (MP3- 0:52)).
And more specifically with respect the budget variable, recall a recent Bloomberg Government Study (BGov study), titled, “The Most Contentious and Difficult Farm Bill Ever?” (June 14) by Dr. Craig Jagger that was highlighted at FarmPolicy.com on June 25.