#Vote4Ag: Presidential contenders weigh in on issues important to farmers

white-houseEvery four years, the American Farm Bureau Federation asks the Democratic and Republican presidential nominees to address the issues that concern farmers and ranchers the most. We asked Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton and Republican nominee Donald Trump the same questions.

Both candidates explained their positions on biotechnology, trade, immigration reform, regulatory reform, food safety and more. That the candidates took the time in the throes of this very competitive election season to go into such detail in their responses says as much about the importance of these issues and the farmers and ranchers who care about them as it does about Clinton’s and Trump’s political platforms.

AFBF will be releasing their responses over the next week, kicking off the series today with the candidate’s positions on regulatory reform.

The schedule for upcoming responses is:

Sept. 21 – Clean Water Act, Clean Air Act and ESA

Sept. 22 – Farm Bill, Biotechnology and Food Safety

Sept. 27 – Immigration

Sept. 28 – International Trade and TPP

Sept. 29 – Energy

Sept. 30 – Full List of Issues

While AFBF cannot endorse or support a political candidate, we are providing each candidate’s position to inform our members and others.

Regulatory Reform

As president, what actions will you take to minimize the federal government’s regulatory burden on businesses such as farming and ranching? Will you support regulatory reform to ensure that federal regulations pass a cost-benefit test and make the process of writing new regulations more transparent?

  TRUMP RESPONSE:

“Our nation’s regulatory system is completely broken. Terrible rules are written by unelected, unaccountable bureaucrats who often know nothing about the people they are regulating. The regulators have all of the power, and our nation’s farmers are often forced to endure costly, burdensome, and unwise regulations that are bad for American farmers and consumers. In many instances, extreme environmental groups have more influence in setting the regulations than the farmers and ranchers who are directly impacted. Hillary Clinton will do the bidding of the radical environmentalists. Whether through excessive land-use restrictions that impact farmers and ranchers, environmental requirements that impose enormous costs on farmers, or over-reaching food product regulations, federal regulatory burdens have increased dramatically in recent years. This must change.  

As President, I will work with Congress to reform our regulatory system. We will reduce the power of government bureaucrats, and increase the freedom of our nation’s farmers to be as productive as possible. We will increase transparency and accountability in the regulatory process. Rational cost-benefit tests will be used to ensure that any regulation is justified before it is adopted. Unjustified regulations that are bad for American farmers and consumers will be changed or repealed. There will be no more “sue and settle” deals with extreme environmentalists.”

 

  CLINTON RESPONSE:

“Hillary is committed to operating the U.S. government in as open and transparent a way as possible. She will continue and expand the open-government initiatives started by the current Administration and will direct federal agencies to increase the amount of information they voluntarily disclose online.  

As president, she will always engage a wide range of stakeholders, including farmers and ranchers, to hear their concerns and ideas for how we can ensure our agriculture sector remains vibrant. If there are implementation challenges with a particular regulation, Hillary will work with all stakeholders to address them.”

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