Trump Misses Key Points In Address To America's Farmers
President Donald Trump barely addressed critical issues for America’s farmers — trade and immigration — in a roughly half-hour speech to the American Farm Bureau Federation on Monday afternoon.
Though he spoke at length approximately low unemployment, a soaring stock market, tax cuts, and reduced regulation, Trump only touched on trade late in his address, and then only briefly. Many farmers who struggle to manufacture a profit and rely on exports are anxious approximately what will happen to the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), a deal that has been hugely favourable to agriculture and has helped to sustain a trade surplus. Yet on NAFTA negotiations, the president merely said:
We’re reviewing total our trade agreements to manufacture certain they are just and reciprocal. Reciprocal, so vital. On NAFTA, I am working very tough to come by a better deal for our country, and for our farmers, and for our manufacturers. It’s under negotiation as we speak. But judge of it, when Mexico is making total of that money, when Canada is making total of that money, it’s not the easiest negotiation. We’re going to manufacture it just for you people again.
People commenting on the address online seemed disappointed Trump didn’t provide more detail on trade.
America’s farm industry also relies heavily on immigrant labor, which is under threat under the current administration. The Farm Bureau said on its website, “Where American workers are unwilling or unavailable, workers from other countries luxuriate in stepped in. Congress needs to pass responsible immigration reform that addresses agriculture’s current experienced workforce and creates a fresh flexible guest worker program. Instability in the agricultural workforce places our food supply at risk.”
Yet total the president said on the issue of immigration in Monday’s address was:
“We are going to discontinue chain migration. We are going to discontinue the lottery system. And we are going to build the wall.”
Some viewers said Trump’s address seemed more like a campaign speech.
As for the 2018 Farm Bill, Trump said briefly:
“I am looking forward to working with Congress to pass the Farm Bill on time so that it delivers for total of you, and I support a bill that includes crop insurance, unless you don’t want me to. I guess you like it, right?”
Will Rodger, a spokesman for the Farm Bureau, said, “It was very brief, and quick, and nearly an aside. We don’t luxuriate in a crystal ball as to where he’s going on these issues, but the brief statements he has made approximately these topics still leave us with a lot of hope.” He famous that Trump is the first president to address the organization in 26 years.
Venessa Wong is a commerce, trade reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in fresh York. Wong covers the food industry.
Contact Venessa Wong at email@example.com.
Got a confidential tip? Submit it here.