Farm Bill Follies

by | Dec 24, 2018

Here is a detailed summary of the policies and politics of the Farm Bill that passed Congress last week.

Details of the 800-page bill were kept under wraps until last Monday night. The reason might have been that, in the words of House Agricultural Committee Ranking Member Collin Peterson (MN-07), “There’s a concern on some of the members’ part that when people find out what’s in the bill, it will start unraveling.”

Looking at the details of the bill, it is clear why it would start unraveling when people find out what’s in it. Not only does the bill not include the Grassley Amendment giving subsidies to non-farmers, it allows cousins, nieces, and nephews of farmers who participate in farm management — which could mean participating in a conference call — to receive federal government subsidies.

The bill allows farmers to change which “shallow loss” programs they will participate in each year instead of sticking with one program for five years. This may allow them to game the system by choosing whichever one will give them the larger amount of taxpayer subsidies.

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About Norman Singleton

Norman Singleton is currently a Senior Fellow at the Market Institute. Mr. Singleton worked for Congressman Ron Paul from 1997-2012. Mr. Singleton served as Legislative Aide on Education and Workforce issues for Congressman Paul from 1997-2001, when he became Congressman Paul’s Legislative Director, a position he held until Congressman Paul left Congress in 2013. Mr. Singleton also served as volunteer policy director for the Ron Paul 2012 Presidential Campaign. Prior to working for Ron Paul, Mr. Singleton worked for the National Right to Work Committee. Mr. Singleton graduated Cum Laude from Washington and Jefferson College with a degree in economics and is a 1991 graduate of the University Of Pittsburgh School Of Law. He is also a founding member of the Republican Liberty Caucus.

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