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Agricultural News

Talking Farm Policy and Regulatory Overreach and More with AFBF Lobbyist Mary Kay Thatcher

Fri, 27 Jan 2012 10:47:55 CST

Talking Farm Policy and Regulatory Overreach and More with AFBF Lobbyist Mary Kay Thatcher While in Washington for the winter wheat industry meetings, we sat down in the offices of the American Farm Bureau and talked at length with AFBF lobbyist Mary Kay Thatcher- and we covered just a small amount of the waterfront on policy and regulatory issues that confront the general farm organization that she represents in our nation's capitol. We began our visit with Thatcher discussing the AFBF farm policy that evolved out of the group's recent convention held in Hawaii. From there, we talked about a multitude of other issues- including:

- The status of a budget score on the Farm Bureau farm policy proposal- Thatcher says nothing yet- but hoping to get it scored after January budget baseline numbers are released this coming week.

- Mary Kay Thatcher believes if Farm Bureau proposal became a key part of the 2012 Commodity title- crop farmers would see cheaper crop insurance premiums going forward.

- Opponents of farm program spending in Washington have grown stronger since the writing of the 2008 farm bill.

- Thatcher expressed skepticism about the ability to move forward in this election year and complete a farm bill.

- She does predict we have to do something with the 2008 bill expiring- an extension is very possible because of that. Reverting to the 1949 permanent law is not an option- she adds the old permanent law has nothing about Food Stamps so that will give the Obama Administration incentive to accept any deal the House and Senate can muster.

- Regulatory Overreach has reached extreme levels with the current administration- and Thatcher predicts the pace could be even faster and harder 2013-2016 if Obama is reelected.

- AFBF's disdain for the HSUS-UEP deal which has been turned into federal legislation- she sees farmers across the US very willing to come to Washington to make sure this proposal gains no traction.

- and finally- we talk about her views on HSUS and their strategy at the state and federal levels in the country.

Click on the LISTEN BAR below to hear our full conversation with Mary Kay Thatcher.



Ron Hays talks with Mary Kay Thatcher in her Washington office of American Farm Bureau
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