This week’s guest on Open Mic is House Agriculture Committee Chairman Mike Conaway. As his committee plans to markup the 2018 farm bill proposal on Wednesday, the Chairman shares thoughts on the politics and the key provisions in the draft proposal including proposed SNAP revisions, conservation programs, and adjustments to Title 1. The Texas Republican also discusses the Trump administration’s trade agenda and trusts USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue to provide protection to potential trade retaliation from global trading partners. Conaway says the nation’s Renewable Fuel Standard is unworkable and needs amendments by both the White House and Congress.
This week’s guest on Open Mic is Minnesota Democrat Collin Peterson. A House Ag impasse on nutrition policy has delayed policy markup of the new farm bill. In this interview, Ranking Member Collin Peterson offers insight to the minority pushback on Chairman Conaway’s draft proposal and other challenges a divided committee may bring to farm policy consideration. Peterson is skeptical of President Trump’s trade strategy and has strong words for potential administrative changes to the nation’s renewable fuel policy. Peterson explains his proposal to amend the Conservation Reserve Program and why other ag leaders should be on board.
This week’s guest on Open Mic is Ray Starling, Special Assistant to the President for Agriculture, Trade and Food Assistance. With a rich career demonstrating a strong advocacy for agriculture, North Carolina native Starling finds himself in the middle of critical decisions over global trade, renewable fuels, and future farm policy. Starling shares industry concerns over possible Chinese trade retaliation and understands the levity of a pending White House decision on the Renewable Fuel Standard. Starling says the report from the President’s Task Force on Agriculture and Rural Prosperity is a road map for the White House goals for rural America.
This week’s guest on Open Mic is U.S. Senator Pat Roberts from Kansas. As Chair of the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry, Roberts acknowledges the “rough patch” farmers and ranchers are in and the need for a timely approval of a bipartisan new farm bill. The Kansas Republican discusses the Trump administration trade agenda and possible government reaction to lost export sales. Roberts is paying close attention to administrative action on the Renewable Fuels Standard and does support efforts to protect the nation’s livestock herd from infectious diseases.
This week’s guest on Open Mic is Dr. Jayson Lusk, Distinguished Professor and Head of the Agriculture Economics Department at Purdue University. With heightened debate on food and farm policy surrounding the development of a new farm bill, Dr. Lusk offers challenging insight about the relationship between political persuasion and food, work requirements for SNAP recipients and evolving preferences in meat consumption.
This week’s guest on Open Mic is U.S. Senator Joni Ernst. The Iowa Republican says farmer concerns over possible changes to the nation’s Renewable Fuel Standard are justified and continues to implore the White House to consider the negative impact of a RIN price cap on farm income. In this interview Senator Ernst discusses agriculture’s need for global market access and offers her concerns over the Trump administration’s decisions on trade negotiations and metals tariffs.