Rural America, and farmers in particular, voted overwhelmingly for President Trump in 2016 but have suffered rather than benefitted for it, said speakers on a "farmers and ranchers roundtable" organized by the Biden-Harris campaign. The forum, held 10 days ahead of the traditional fall campaign kickoff of Labor Day, criticized Trump for using agriculture as a pawn in the Sino-U.S. trade war and labeled him weak on ethanol.(No paywall)
Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue solicited votes for President Trump in violation of the 1939 federal law that bars partisan activity by federal officials while on the job, said a complaint filed by a good-government group. The complaint cites Perdue's comments at a produce packing shed in North Carolina, where Trump announced a $1-billion extension of the administration's food-box giveaway program.
Hours after he was nominated for a second term, President Trump announced at a produce packing house in North Carolina an additional $1 billion on Monday for the food-box giveaway program that is his administration's answer to hunger during the pandemic. Nearly 71 million boxes of food have been delivered since the program began on May 15 but critics question if it is a fair and efficient way to help families.
Farmers, in overwhelming numbers, said they would vote to re-elect President Trump this fall, but the landslide margin was smaller than in April, according to a telephone survey by DTN/Progressive Farmer.
President Trump declared Sino-U.S. relations "severely damaged" and said he has "many other things in mind" beyond following up on the interim agreement that de-escalated the trade war between the world's two largest economies. Trump spoke dismissively of new negotiations with China on Friday, hours after exporters reported the largest sale of U.S. corn to China in 26 years.
Some Chinese trade advisers are arguing that Beijing should invalidate the "phase one" trade agreement that de-escalated the Sino-U.S. trade war as retaliation for a U.S. coronavirus blame campaign, reported a state-controlled Chinese newspaper on Monday. The agreement obliges China, formerly the top customer for U.S. ag exports, to buy roughly $40 billion a year of American food, agricultural and seafood products.
President Trump will endanger his standing with farmers, who voted for him in landslide numbers in 2016, if his administration appeals a U.S. appellate court ruling against RFS exemptions, said ag and biofuel leaders on Wednesday.
Despite strong and bipartisan House support for farm labor reform, President Trump is unlikely to sign a reform bill, now stalled in the Senate, if it reaches him, said Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue on Wednesday.
Three weeks after President Trump boasted of protecting crop insurance in the 2018 farm bill, the White House proposed a 31 percent cut in the federally subsidized program on Monday. The cuts, part of the administration's budget package for fiscal 2021, were proposed — and rejected by lawmakers — in previous years.
As President Trump scored his second trade victory in two days, Senate approval of the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement, he asked farmers on Thursday to remember the billions of dollars they had received in trade war payments.