Donald Trump

Meatpackers drafted Trump order on meat plants during Covid-19

Facing pressure from local health officials over conditions in their plants, meatpacking companies "drafted and pitched an executive order to the Trump White House" to keep slaughterhouses open during the first months of the Covid-19 pandemic, said a congressional staff report on Thursday. When President Trump issued an order that adopted the industry position, meatpackers exaggerated its scope.

‘You have a partner in the White House,’ Biden tells farmers

In a video message to a sector that overwhelmingly voted against him, President Biden told farmers on Monday, "you have a partner in the White House" who is pursuing agricultural prosperity and fair prices in the marketplace. Biden, who has assailed meatpackers for high profits during the pandemic, pointed to a proposed $1 billion to expand slaughter capacity and efforts to keep ag exports moving despite port congestion.

Trump trade war had ‘winners and losers’

When Trump appointees at the USDA parceled out trade war assistance to farmers, they exaggerated the damage in 2019 and over-compensated corn and wheat growers, said a congressional agency on Monday. "This report confirms that the Trump USDA picked winners and losers in their trade programs and left everyone else behind," said Senate Agriculture chairwoman Debbie Stabenow, a Michigan Democrat.

Fear of reprisal kept immigrants from accessing federal aid in pandemic

Fear, fueled by the Trump administration’s anti-immigrant rhetoric and policies, kept many low-income immigrant families from accessing non-cash benefits and other federal assistance programs they were eligible for in 2020, even as the pandemic deepened economic hardship, according to two new analyses released today from the Urban Institute.(No paywall)

Trump-backed legal group sues for debt relief for white farmers

With Texas agriculture commissioner Sid Miller as the plaintiff, a Trump-aligned legal group on Tuesday challenged the $4 billion debt-relief plan approved by Congress for Black and minority farmers, saying it was unconstitutional. "Americans of all races and ethnicities must have the opportunity to receive" USDA loan forgiveness, said America First Legal Foundation in announcing the suit. No paywall

After refusing to overturn election, five House ag panelists oppose impeachment

Although they defied President Trump's efforts to overturn the 2020 presidential election, five Republicans on the House Agriculture Committee voted on Wednesday against impeaching Trump for inciting the deadly mob attack on the Capitol last week. They said that impeachment was divisive and hasty, while the new Agriculture chairman, Georgia Democrat David Scott, said speedy action was needed.

Perdue demurs at cabinet sideline of Trump

While the top Democrats in Congress threatened to impeach President Trump for the second time, Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue said on Thursday that he was not part of any discussions among cabinet members to sideline Trump by declaring him unfit to do his job. "Nor do I expect to have any" part in such talk, said Perdue during a trip to Georgia.

Pro-Trump mob ‘was an attack on American democracy’

The invasion of the Capitol by a pro-Trump mob was an assault on U.S. democracy, said farm state lawmakers on Wednesday. Rioters interrupted the certification of Joe Biden's election as president over President Trump, who told protesters that he would never concede defeat. Biden and former president George W. Bush called the invasion an insurrection.

Once again, rural America votes for Trump

Rural America was key to Donald Trump's election in 2016 and rural voters backed him again this year, although by how much is unclear. While one exit poll reported that 54 percent of small city or rural residents voted for Trump, the Daily Yonder said the president's performance in Ohio, a battleground state, "looks a lot like 2016," when he rolled up huge margins in rural counties.

Financial and trade issues loom in agriculture as presidential race ends

The winner of the presidential election on Tuesday, whether it’s President Trump or Democratic nominee Joe Biden, will face agricultural issues that include the trade war with China and the approaching end of mammoth stopgap subsidies that have propped up farm income for two years in a …

Trump runs in rural America on ethanol, tax cuts, regulatory relief

President Trump is ending his re-election campaign in rural America on the same issues that boosted him in 2016: Promises of tax cuts, fewer federal regulations and support for corn ethanol. In addition, farmers are wealthy from $23 billion in trade-war payments, said Trump in Dubuque, Iowa, on Sunday; "That's why you're all here and you're all happy."

Peterson-Fischbach race stands out in House contests

If there were a "toss-up caucus" of U.S. representatives in the tightest races, House Agriculture chairman Collin Peterson could be its premiere member. The Blue Dog Democrat from western Minnesota is running for re-election against a well-financed Republican, former Lt. Gov. Michelle Fischbach, in a district that that voted for President Trump in a landslide in 2016.

Trump, Biden debate source of billions in aid to farmers

President Trump took credit for billions of dollars in trade war payments to U.S. farmers during the final presidential debate on Thursday. "I just gave $28 billion to our farmers," said Trump. "Taxpayers' money," interjected Democratic nominee Joe Biden in the only reference to agriculture, lasting less than a minute, in the two debates between the candidates.

Perdue violated rules against politicking on the job, says ethics agency

Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue violated a 1939 law against politicking on the job when he urged the re-election of President Trump at a produce packing house in North Carolina on Aug. 24 and must reimburse the government "for the costs associated with his political activity," said the U.S. Office of Special Counsel on Thursday.

Trump failed on trade and ethanol, says Democratic farm forum

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)

Perdue violated anti-politicking law, says ethics complaint

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.

Trump boosts food-box funding by $1 billion

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.

Survey shows a drop in farmer support for Trump

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.

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