The Clinton administration proposes a new farm bailout program, which is drawing praise from democrats & criticism from republicans. The plan would use 11-and-a-half BILLION dollars for farm support payments, providing higher payments during hard times & lower ones when the ag economy is good. Iowa Congressman Tom Latham, a republican from Alexander, says the plan isn’t all bad. He says it’s good to finally get a proposal.Latham says though, the package is somewhat meager and may not be focused in the right direction.The farm aid plan would also pay landowners to conserve soil & water without being forced to keep the land idle. That’s of particular interest to Iowa Senator Tom Harkin, a democrat from Cumming, says the Freedom to Farm Act, which had strong republican backing, needs to be replaced because it’s done little to help farmers who’ve struggled in recent years.While Harkin says the Clinton proposal would focus help on family farms, Latham says the proposal would likely do little to help Iowa farmers, nor would it help farmers across the Midwest.
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