Two agricultural organizations that are often on opposite sides of the fence when it comes to policy will be the leaders of this week’s Farm Bill Now rally in the nation’s capitol. The presidents of the American Farm Bureau Federation and the National Farmers Union will join together as masters of ceremony for the rally on Wednesday, September 12, at 11:00 am at Union Square by the Capitol Reflecting Pool.
The presidents of those two organizations on the state level joined together during a Farm Bill Now press conference at the 2012 Farm Progress Show to show a united front for all of American agriculture. “Let me say it’s just not just a Farm Bill its a package deal. It’s a farm, food, energy, and jobs bill. It’s important to every, and each American,” Iowa Farmer’s Union president Chris Peterson (left) said.
Craig Hill, president of Iowa Farm Bureau and board member of AFBF, says Congress may only have a few days to work this month, but with a Senate-passed bill and one out of the House Agriculture Committee, there’s not much left to be done. “It doesn’t take a heavy lift to finish this off now,” he said. “Really they are very, very similar.”
Listen to an interview with Craig Hill here: Craig Hill interview
The Association of Equipment Manufacturers (AEM) is also part of the Farm Bill Now coalition and president Dennis Slater took part in the Farm Progress Show event as well, noting that the Farm Bill is broad and the ag equipment industry has assisted the farm agriculture community providing the safest, most abundant, most affordable food supply in the world.
“This has allowed farmers and ranchers to continue to invest in modern equipment that they need to stay competitive and stay successful throughout the world,” he said. “The drought this summer throughout the country really dramatically underscores the need to maintain a strong safety net for the farmers so they have the confidence for their business going forward.”
Listen to an interview with Dennis here: Dennis Slater interview
A number of organization representatives and lawmakers are scheduled to speak at the rally on Wednesday. On the lawmaker side, those confirmed include Senate Ag Committee Chair Debbie Stabenow, Kansas Senator Jerry Moran, House Ag Committee Ranking Member Collin Peterson and South Dakota Representative Kristi Noem.