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Turn on and Tune In, but Don't be a Dropout

It’s about that time, and the political junkies here in the home office are salivating at the prospect of full House Agriculture Committee consideration of the 2007 farm bill. Up until this point, the entire farm bill process has been a little dull, fairly predictable, and generally a snoozefest for those not obsessed with farm programs. But now we get to watch (and hopefully influence) members of the ag committee as they actually try to hammer out the real deal and send a farm bill to the floor.

Congress Should Cap Farm Subsidies

The closer Congress gets to the final farm bill debate, the more one hears members of the Senate and House Agriculture Committees insisting that no money be removed from farm commodity programs to support other programs, like rural economic development.

Center Newsletter: House Ag Committee Farm Bill Critique

This month's Center for Rural Affairs Newsletter is now online.

The newsletter features a commentary by Center Director Chuck Hassebrook on the House Ag Committee's current draft of the Farm Bill. Of payment limits reform in the draft bill, he writes:

[E]ven Peterson’s illusion of reform was scuttled in subcommittee for an extension of the 2002 farm bill.

We're in the Wrong Business

We’ve mentioned before that Southern elected representatives (plus California) are the biggest obstacle to strong, effective payment limitations. The single most important reason for this is that the primary Southern crops- cotton and rice- receive much higher per-acre payments than the other three big program crops (corn, soybeans, wheat). How much higher is something that is not always clear. The EWG database that details payments to producers is great, but it doesn’t get into the differen

Floor Rumblings

Two points today on some floor rumblings...  One current, and a couple of interviews I should have noted a while back.

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