Speaker McCarthy Emphasizes Importance of Farmers at 2023 World Ag Expo

Brian GermanIndustry

2023 World Ag Expo

House Speaker Kevin McCarthy opened the 2023 World Ag Expo on Tuesday, lighting the ceremonial cannon to begin the event. He referenced his home district that encompasses portions of Kern, Fresno, Tulare, and Kings counties as giving him particular reverence for the work of farmers and ranchers. Speaker McCarthy spoke of the vital importance of farmers and their role in providing food for the country and the world.

Speaker McCarthy

“No one grows it in the manner that we do with the security, the safety, and the plentifulness. My job, our job as legislators, is to unshackle that and allow you to continue to do your job,” McCarthy said to the crowd during the opening ceremony. “I see the challenges that are going on. I’ve seen a nation continue to change. But when we focus on our foundation, nobody outcompetes us.”

Speaker McCarthy spoke to the issue of trade during his opening address, noting the challenges that agriculture faces in international markets. “When we have fair trade, we can compete and we can put our products on every table,” said McCarthy. Highlighting the resiliency of U.S. producers, McCarthy pointed out the need for lawmakers to better address the challenges that agriculture faces.

Speaker McCarthy

“Our job in the next Congress is to make sure you have the ability to do your job. That means at times, we’re going to be loud. That means at times, we’re going to have to fight,” McCarthy noted. “But I want you to learn one trait from me that I learned from the Valley: I will never give up.”

Shortly after the opening ceremonies, Speaker McCarthy was joined by nine members of Congress, including House Agricultural Committee Chairman Glenn “GT” Thompson for a 2023 Farm Bill listening session. McCarthy said that hearing from farmers and ranchers themselves is vital for ensuring the farm bill meets the needs of the industry. “Come forward. Give us your ideas. Because we want to bring Washington to you and we want to take your values back there,” McCarthy noted.

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Brian German

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Ag News Director, AgNet West