As the Senate moves to approve a new farm subsidy bill, a Johns Hopkins political scientist and author of a recent book examining the history of U.S. farm subsidies and farm policy says the current debate is really about the farm lobby trying to get what they can, before fiscal austerity returns to Washington.
"Agriculture lobbyists hope to have a bill passed by the Senate as soon as possible so that differences with the House version [passed in October 2001] can be resolved in conference committee and signed by President Bush," said Adam Sheingate, an assistant professor of political science and the author of The Rise of the Agricultural Welfare State. "The longer farm bill debate drags on, farm lobbyists worry, the less likely Congress will pass and the president will sign a generous subsidy package."
In his research, Sheingate traces the rise of agricultural policy in the United States, from the 1880s through the 1990s, and compares how farmers influence the political process in this country as compared with France and Japan. His insight into how farm subsidies have worked over time make him a valuable resource for anyone writing about the current agricultural legislation in Congress.
To arrange an interview with Sheingate, contact Glenn Small at 410-516-6094 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
To hear Sheingate talk about his work, go to: www.jhu.edu/news_info/news/audio-video/ sheingate.html.
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