Clinton’s vision for ag in U.S. |

Clinton’s vision for ag in U.S.

Neither of the two presidential candidates has made agriculture a priority issue in their compaigns.

In fact hearing either Hillary Clinton, the Democratic nominee, or Donald Trump, the Republican nominee even utter the word “agriculture,” let alone “livestock” or “cattle issues” seems about as likely as seeing one cast a vote for the other.

Clinton has talked extensively about her immigration policy. She said, according to Farm Futures, that she will introduce comprehensive immigration reform with a pathway to full and equal citizenship.

She also told Farm Futures that she supports the Obama Administration’s Waters of the United States (WOTUS) rule and will work toward a common sense implementation. Agri-Pulse reported that she supports Obama’s Clean Power Plan which imposes controls on carbon emmissions from electric utilities. She has set a goal of generating enough “clean renewable energy to power every home in America,” in the next 10 years, and she’d like to increase solar power capacity by 700 percent in 2020, said the Agri-Pulse story.

According to Ballotpedia, Hillary Clinton unveiled her plan to support coal-dependent communities on November 12, 2015. She proposed repurposing mine lands and power plant sites for forestry, agriculture, and manufacturing; electrifying dams on federal land; and supporting local food and agriculture businesses in Central Appalachia.

Clinton wants to expand access to fresh food for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program recipients. Her plan would support local rural economies and make more fresh fruits and vegetables accessible to SNAP participants at farmers markets. Pilot programs have demonstrated increases in the purchasing power of SNAP benefits when recipients used them to buy local fruits and vegetables. Clinton’s food policy incorporates the “Farm-to-Fork” initiative she promoted while serving in the U.S. Senate, said Ballotpedia.

Ballotpedia reports that her proposal for rural improvement includes the following actions:

• Simplify regulations for community banks in rural areas to facilitate the funding of small businesses.

• Increase access to high-speed broadband technology.

• Double funding for the Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development program and work to decrease student debt through the New College Compact.

• Double funding for the Farmers Market Promotion Program and the Local Food Promotion Program to strengthen local food systems.

• Improve the targeted distribution of federal resources for disaster assistance.

• Enact comprehensive immigration reform that acknowledges the contribution of immigrants and migrant workers to agriculture.

• Fully fund the Environmental Quality Incentive Programs and initiatives like the Regional Conservation Partnership Program.

• Strengthen the Renewable Fuel Standard.

• Double funding for Early Head Start to increase access to preschool education for rural children.

Improve access to healthcare through telemedicine and rural health clinics.

In December 2007, Clinton voted in favor of an amendment to HR 2419 – Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008, that would have limited the amount of subsidies that married couples deriving a portion of their income from farming or related activities could receive.

Clinton voted in favor of the conference report on HR 2744 – Agriculture, Rural Development and FDA Appropriations Act of 2006. This law established appropriations for the Agricultural Research Service, Farm Service Agency, Rural Community Advancement Program, Rural Electrification and Telecommunications Loans Program, and Rural Housing Insurance Fund Program.

According to Agri-Pulse, Clinton was an advocate for animal welfare when she served in the Senate, earning ratings from the Humane Society of the United States of 75 percent and 83 percent respectively, her last two years in the chamber.

As a senator, she co-sponsored the Downed Animal and Food Safety Protection Act to ban the slaughter of livestock unable to walk and amendments to the Horse Protection Act to prevent slaughtering horses for human consumption

Her policy includes a commitment to defend President Obama’s Clean Power Plan which imposes controls on carbon emissions from electric utilities.

According to Clinton’s website, as president, she will:

• Support family farms. Hillary will increase funding to support the next generation of farmers and ranchers in local food markets and regional food systems. And she’ll create a focused safety net to help family farms get through challenging times.

• Promote clean energy. Hillary will encourage our nation’s commitment to clean energy by assisting farms that conserve and improve natural resources. She’ll also strengthen the Renewable Fuel Standard and double loans that help support the bio-based economy.

Despite multiple attempts, no representative for Clinton could be reached for comment so this information was obtained online.

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