Farmers Concerned About Debt Debate

As President Barack Obama and Speaker of the House John Boehner struggle to reach an agreement to raise the debt ceiling, farm organizations are worried about the potential consequences of a U.S. debt default. The National Farmers Union, the American Farm Bureau Federation, the National Corn Growers Association, and 33 other major farm organizations have signed off on an open letter to the President and Congressional leaders urging them to reach an agreement on the debt ceiling.

One of the more important requests of the farm organization is that the debt agreement is large enough to last. One of the major worries of groups like the National Farmers Union is that a temporary debt compromise will only last for a few months, reigniting protracted debate, and preventing Congressional leaders from implementing a broad, long-lasting vision for the upcoming Farm Bill.

In addition, farm groups are worried about the depth of farm cuts. While most major farm organizations have expressed a willingness to sacrifice their budgets, they hope that potential cuts will be done while keeping the long-term sustainability of American agriculture in mind. For example, some farm groups are worried about proposals by Oklahoma Senator Tom Coburn, who has advocated eliminating all commodity programs and reducing conservation programs by over 60 percent.

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Written by: Justin Ellison / Farm Plus Staff Writer