Two major agriculture interest groups issued statements Wednesday in reaction to Tuesday's election results.
Both the American Soybean Association and the American Farm Bureau Federation congratulated President Obama and members of Congress for their victories, calling for immediate work to begin on crafting a new farm bill.
Statement by Bob Stallman, president of the American Farm Bureau Federation, regarding the election and the coming lame duck session of Congress:
"The American Farm Bureau Federation congratulates President Barack Obama on his re-election, as well as those candidates elected to serve during the 113th session of Congress. A number of important issues lie ahead of us, both for our nation, and for American agriculture. It is vital that, under the president's leadership, all our elected officials come together in a bipartisan fashion to resolve the challenges we face.
"Farmers and ranchers, like all Americans, have a list of issues that they are relying on the administration and Congress to address. But we cannot wait until 2013 for the action to start. Serious work on the farm bill, the fiscal cliff and critical tax policy fixes all must start during the lame duck session of the 112th Congress.
"Farm Bureau also looks forward to working in a cooperative and positive manner with the Obama administration and the new Congress on issues such as turning around our economy, ensuring agriculture an adequate labor supply, pursuing a trade agenda focused on reducing barriers and expanding exports and the continued fiscal challenges we face as a nation. There are many points of view on these issues, but we also know that our elected leaders have one thing in common: each ran on a platform to make America better and improve this country for all Americans.
"We will do our part to help identify opportunities for cooperation, not only to improve the lives of Farm Bureau members and their rural communities, but for all Americans proudly served by our farm and ranch families."
ASA Urges Bipartisan Cooperation
The American Soybean Association congratulates President Barack Obama on his reelection as the 44th president of the United States. ASA President Steve Wellman, a soybean producer from Syracuse, Neb., issues the following statement on yesterday’s poll results:
"The American Soybean Association congratulates President Obama on his reelection and looks forward to working with the president and his administration in the interest of America's soybean farmers. Over the past four years, ASA has worked with the Obama administration and Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack to advance critical priorities for the men and women of the soybean industry, including work toward the passing a comprehensive Farm Bill in 2012, passage of trade agreements, and restoring budgetary responsibility in Washington and nationwide.
"ASA is committed to working with the Obama administration and Congress to help avoid the fiscal cliff; pass a new comprehensive farm bill to provide certainty to farmers and ranchers; extend current estate tax rates; expand trade opportunities; ensure freedom to operate and avoid needless regulatory burdens; address our nation’s energy needs through biodiesel and bio-based products; and advance new technologies, including biotechnology, both domestically and globally.
"With Democrats continuing to have a majority in the Senate and Republicans continuing to hold a majority in the House, the need for both parties and the president to work to find common ground on the pressing issues important to our country is critical. A hallmark of agricultural policy has always been its bipartisan nature. ASA urges the president as well as members of both the House and Senate return to Washington with a renewed sense of purpose next week, so we can all get back to work serving America's hard-working families.
"ASA looks forward to working with elected officials on the key issues important to our country and to soybean farmers.
"ASA represents all U.S. soybean farmers on domestic and international issues of importance to the soybean industry. ASA's advocacy efforts are made possible through the voluntary membership in ASA by more than 21,000 farmers in 31 states where soybeans are grown."
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