Later today, President Donald Trump will release a Farm Bill that would provide around $14 billion in farm subsidies to ranchers and farmers.
But if elected to the presidency, Mr. Trump will not have done anything to support agriculture in the first eight months of his term. In fact, it looks like he may push for only $2 billion to help farmers and ranchers.
As we reported earlier this month, Mr. Trump has yet to announce whether he will support the Farm Bill, which is currently being written and led by Texas Republican, Congressman Kevin Brady.
The 2017 bill, which was signed into law by then President-elect Donald Trump, primarily helped farmers keep production in check by expanding crop insurance, beefing up emergency beef loans and providing tax credits for livestock producers.The president’s Action Plan
But during his first eight months in office, Mr. Trump has not acted to protect farmer assistance programs from budget cuts.
Over the years, FOBAMA has been responsible for about $13 billion in FOBAMA funding for farmers. That number is set to drop to $12.7 billion for FY2018.
The farm bill that Congress will vote on on Friday will partially fund SNAP, food stamps for low-income Americans, food banks and other organizations that serve the people of America.
The loan and grant program that helps farmers, as well as ranchers, sell off their agricultural property to cover deficit payments, will also receive some help.
But the most important aid is the land conservation funding, which provides direct cash payments to farmers through USDA Rural Development programs, which include the Land Conservation Fund.This money was created in 1972 by President Richard Nixon to help farmers that lost their land through the end of World War II. (Real money vs. interest.)
Until last month, farmers that did not sell their land had to pick up the tab directly to USDA. But now that the federal deficit has reached such an insane level, the program has been shut down.What does this mean for farmers?
Some farmers will be able to continue selling their land at a higher price if they receive grants that allow them to re-sell the land. But that can lead to losses that can quickly climb to $500,000 or more. And some will face foreclosure as a result of the higher costs.And what about FOBAMA?
Those who sold their land last year to the federal government will continue to receive FOBAMA funding under the proposed 2019 bill.
But an individual farm also falls under the grant program, so if they lose their land through selling their land and USDA grants then they will have to do so themselves.
Which is no way to make the farm a financially stable situation.And who is Mr. Trump supporting now?
Not Republicans. But not Democrats either.President Trump’s Action Plan
But if Trump still seeks to avoid having to use taxpayer funds for FOBAMA, his “Action Plan” — which includes no change to farmers’ food stamp benefits — also includes a GOP voting no.
In addition, no mention is made of just how much money, if any, will be spent on the Trade Adjustment Assistance program. The USDA’s TAA program helps former U.S. workers displaced by trade, thus making it cost-prohibitive for many farmers to continue hiring former U.S. workers.Another word of caution
This is all anecdotal, and it is impossible to know the final impact of all of these programs. But historically, farmers have been pretty reluctant to change their industries through political engineering, so this is just speculation.
By the way, last year the House and Senate failed to pass the Farm Bill after they agreed to massive cuts to SNAP that made it virtually impossible for Congress to get a solid majority on the House and Senate for any policy change.
Given that it appears Republicans and the Trump administration want to do something similar this year, maybe the president will meet with a bipartisan group of Farm Bill supporters to make them happy.