Vilsack differs with Grassley on payment limitations |

Vilsack differs with Grassley on payment limitations

In a radio interview, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said that the farm program has to work in all parts of the country, a position that would indicate he is more open to a softer position on payment limits than Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa.

In the interview with Mike Adams on AgriTalk, Vilsack, a former Iowa governor, said that he has “a lot of respect” for Grassley, who has campaigned hard for farm bill conferees to keep the strict payment limits that are in the House and Senate bills.

But he added that Grassley’s “focus is obviously on that family farmer out there who needs help. And I certainly agree that that’s where the focus and assistance needs to be. But I think you also have to recognize that there are different sized operations in different parts of the country, and what may be absolutely appropriate for one part of the country may not work for producers in another part of the country.”

“That’s what makes the farm bill farm bill so challenging, that we have such great diversity in agriculture in America,” Vilsack said. “And God bless us for having that, and it’s a great blessing to have, but it does create a challenge when trying to put together a bill that directs help to folks who need it.”

Vilsack also noted that the farm bill will get rid of the direct payments that have been the subject of so much criticism.

–The Hagstrom Report