The deep cuts to the nation’s agricultural support programs proposed by President Donald Trump have put Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue in an awkward position with both lawmakers and farm groups. Politico’s Morning Agriculture Report says a good example of this is the plan to cut funding for trade promotion programs and to eliminate more than 230 jobs geared toward boosting U.S. exports. These proposed cuts follow a promise from the secretary that the administration would focus on expanding foreign market access to help farmers. The plan also proposes to cut $193 billion from the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program over the next decade. However, that idea runs completely opposite of comments that Perdue made about SNAP before the House Agriculture Committee that said, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” In a budget hearing with reporters on Tuesday, Politico says Perdue didn’t speak much, passing off the telephone to acting USDA Deputy Secretary and Budget Director Michael Young. During the briefing, Young was quick to point out that USDA and the secretary had little to no part in putting together the budget proposal.
From the National Association of Farm Broadcasting news service.