Trump announced today mega subsidies to aid farmers this year while his trade war with china continues:
NY POST – President Trump announced $16 billion in fresh aid to help farmers and ranchers who have been hurt by his year-long trade war with China.
“We will ensure that the farmers will get the relief that they need and very, very quickly. It’s a good time to be a farmer, we’re gonna make sure of that,” Trump said Thursday at an announcement ceremony in the Roosevelt Room.
Agriculture is one of the sectors that have been the hardest hit by the conflict with China that has led to both countries imposing tariffs on the other’s goods.
Last year the administration doled out $12 billion in aid to boost farmers.
In the Roosevelt Room, Trump again told the story of how in a previous meeting with American farmers he was told that they didn’t want subsidies. “Just give us a level playing field,” the president said the farmers told him.
“I’m very honored to have done this for you. I don’t consider this a gift at all, it’s not a gift,” Trump said.
So where will this 16 billion come from?
The new cash for farmers, paid through the Commodity Credit Corporation fund, would be paid in three installments, with the first one given to them later this summer. Another payment would come in November and again in January 2020.
There has been some criticism from at least one Republican over the timing of Trump’s announcement. Politico explains:
President Donald Trump’s snap decision to send billions of dollars in new aid to farmers could be bad for the farm economy and the federal budget.
Many farmers are still deciding what to plant this spring and could be swayed toward crops that receive higher payouts from the aid package, such as soybeans. That would add to already record supplies and further depress prices that have been falling for five years.
But the Trump administration’s decision to roll out the program now is drawing critics.
Sen. Chuck Grassley, an Iowa Republican, told reporters Wednesday that the White House should have been more cautious about the timing of the announcement because farmers are still planting.
“[W]e want farmers to make decisions on how many acres of corn and soybeans to plant based on the market and not something the government’s doing,” he said.
I believe since Trump already has the funds in the Commodity Credit Corporation fund, that Congress won’t have to pass a new authorization for the funds. If I’m wrong about that someone let me know.