The National Association of State Departments of Agriculture and the Farm Foundation, a non-partisan agricultural policy research group, recently announced that a Presidential Forum will be held on September 12, allowing representatives from the Obama and Romney campaigns to discuss the relative merits of their respective agricultural policies.
With the Republican and Democratic National Conventions recently ending, the 2012 presidential election is now officially underway. While in some cases the upcoming election has derailed vital farm legislation (the 2012 Farm Bill is reportedly stalled due to congressional concerns over electoral repercussions), the election is also likely to highlight certain farm issues.
In particular, the geography of the election will be significant. With two major swing states (Iowa and Ohio, which possess a combined total of 24 electoral votes) in the middle of the Farm Belt, some policy experts believe that the election will inevitably address agricultural concerns like farm subsidies and ethanol mandates.
According to the president of the Farm Foundation, “As a non-advocacy organization, Farm Foundation has an important role in providing this opportunity for voters to learn more about the platforms of the respective candidates. This Forum is an important opportunity to focus on the candidates’ attention to the enormous challenges facing the global food system, agriculture and rural communities.”
Nebraska Senator and former U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Mike Johanns will represent the Romney camp while former Iowa Lieutenant Governor and former Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Patty Judge will represent the Obama camp.
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Written by: Justin Ellison / Farm Plus Staff Writer