Second verse, same as the first.
Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue just announced taxpayers are on the hook for a second round of hush money to be spent attempting to buy goodwill amongst red state voters agricultural businesses negatively affected by the trade war.
In September, the administration unveiled details on its $12 billion plan to mail checks to farm businesses and buy “excess” crops that business are unable to export. At the time the feds only committed to spending half of the funding, announcing that the second $6 billion would be spent after December 1, and only if the trade war was not wrapped up with great new trade deals.
Well, Trump’s trade faux pas is still raging. Both U.S. steel and aluminum tariffs, which kicked off this whole trade war, and foreign government tariffs imposed in response look like they are here to stay. And U.S. tariffs on products from China are actually set to increase starting January 1.
So you might as well stop pretending the Market Facilitation Payments program is a one-time temporary fix. As long as Trump is president, these tariffs and the economic disruption they cause will be in place. You can add taxpayer-financed trade payments to the long laundry list of agricultural business income entitlement programs preventing taxpayers from ever harvesting any promised savings from federal farm policy.