No farm bill, no problem

In a new op-ed, American Enterprise Institute (AEI) agricultural economist Vince Smith explains why no new farm bill is no national catastrophe. To read the entire piece, click here.


In the piece he assess which farm bill programs are actually at risk of losing funding, and demonstrates that the actual harm is minimal to none. Indeed total annual expenditures on all of the “under threat” programs account for less than one percent of total farm bill spending.

Smith explains that Congress should not be steam-rolled into a new, potentially expensive farm bill based minor, short-term interruptions.

He also offers a reminder about how the farm bill reached its current impasse:

"When the House leadership offered an extension of the 2008 farm bill in late July, coupled with the provision of funding for three livestock disaster aid programs, the farm, nutrition program, and environmental lobbies all combined to unanimously reject that option. So the moderately irritating hair-shirt interruptions in a very small number of programs about which farm groups are now complaining is a shirt they have made for themselves."

Vincent H. Smith is a visiting scholar at AEI and an agricultural economist at Montana State University. Learn more about AEI’s American Boondoggle: Fixing the 2012 Farm Bill project at www.AmericanBoondoggle.com.

For media inquiries please contact michael.pratt@aei.org (202.862.5823).

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About the Author

 

Vincent H.
Smith
  • Vincent H. Smith is Professor of Economics in the Department of Agricultural Economics and Economics at Montana State University and co-director of MSU’s Agricultural Marketing Policy Center. He received his Ph.D. from North Carolina State University in 1987 and his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Manchester in 1970 and 1971. Dr. Smith’s current research program examines agricultural trade and domestic policy issues, with a particular focus on agricultural insurance, agricultural science policy, domestic and world commodity markets, risk management, and agricultural trade policy. He has authored nine books and monographs and published over 100 articles on agricultural and other policy and economic issues. His work has been recognized nationally through multiple national awards for outstanding research programs. In 2008, he became a Distinguished Scholar of the Western Agricultural Economics Association. Currently he is a Visiting AEI Scholar and co-director of AEI’s agricultural policy initiative. Dr. Smith is married and he and his wife, Laura, have two children, Karen and Meredith.
  • Email: uaevs@montana.edu
  • Assistant Info

    Name: Neil McCray
    Phone: 2028625826
    Email: neil.mccray@aei.org

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