The financial windfall to farmers from the new Ag Bill is known, but the political ramifications are yet to be determined. Iowa Democrat Tom Harkin, the chair of the Senate Ag Committee, shepherded the bill as it made its way through Congress and the eventual compromise that was approved. President Bush says he’ll sign the bill. Harkin is facing a challenge for re-election in the fall from Republican Congressman Greg Ganske. Harkin was asked how his success in getting the bill through will help his bid for a fourth term, as Ganske voted against the bill. Harkin says he hopes to have a good debate on the issue, as he says he thinks farmers need to see what the differences are. Harkin says Ganske did vote for the original House version of the bill that Harkin says didn’t have many of the important provisions from the Senate bill the ended up in the final version.He says Ganske voted against such things as covering swine producers with the Packers and Stockyard Act, voted against the provision that increases the money devoted to conservation. Harkin says, “Mr. Ganske has a lot of explaining to do.” Harkin made his comments today in his week conference call with the media.
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