Abuse of agricultural trade aid costs U.S. taxpayers

President Trump pledged $12 billion to provide direct aid to corn, cotton, dairy, hog, sorghum, soybean and wheat producers. Through the Market Facilitation Program, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, USDA, has administered this aid to provide short-term relief to producers who are feeling the effects of ongoing trade disputes with foreign governments.

However, a recent report from the Environmental Working Group highlights two major flaws: 1) Some farming operations are receiving excessive payments because they are taking advantage of loopholes, like having numerous absentee managers or family members claim “active personal management.” 2) Some of these payments are going to individuals who do not live or work on the farm.

This exploitation of loopholes and abuse of taxpayer dollars by some farming operations is a heavy burden on the shoulders of American taxpayers. Congress’ poor policies are driving farm consolidation and hurting our rural communities. The time for change is now.