Economy

Farm Bailouts Under Trump Now Total Nearly $50 Billion

JM Ashby
Written by JM Ashby

The Trump White House recently announced the third bailout for the American agricultural industry in the past year and now we know how big it's going to be.

The third bailout will total $19 billion according to the Department of Agriculture including $16 billion direct cash payments and $3 billion in federal purchases of commodities.

The $16 billion in direct payments to farmers and ranchers will include $9.6 billion for the livestock industry - with $5.1 billion for cattle, $2.9 billion for dairy and $1.6 billion for hogs, according to a statement released late Friday by U.S. Senator John Hoeven of North Dakota, chairman of the Senate Agriculture Appropriations Committee.

In addition, $3.9 billion will be paid to row crop producers, $2.1 billion for specialty crop farmers and $500 million for other crops, according to the statement. The payments are capped at $250,000 per individual farmer or entity.

At a size of $19 billion, this is Trump's largest farm bailout to date. It's significantly larger than Trump's first bailout of $12 billion and larger than his second bailout of $16 billion.

Altogether, the Department of Agriculture under Trump has funneled nearly $50 billion in cash subsidies to American farmers who've been harmed by both Trump's global trade war and his bungled response to the coronavirus pandemic. And Trump's trade war is still ongoing. It hasn't stopped for the pandemic.

China's purchases of American agriculture under "phase one" of Trump's "biggest and greatest deal ever" totaled $5 billion in the first quarter of the year. Repeating that through four quarters would result in about $20 billion in purchases or about the same amount they imported before the trade war began. And you might say that represents success, but China was suppose to import over $34 billion this year as part of Trump's deal. It remains to seen if that will happen, but it seems unlikely as consumer demand isn't returning to or exceeding normal levels anytime soon.

Failed, incompetent leadership is extremely expensive; far more expensive than the cost of common sense regulations and environmental standards.

  • Draxiar

    I’m curious to know how many of these farmers bitch about socialism destroying their way of life.

  • Aynwrong

    “All right, there are 47 percent who are with him, who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe the government has a responsibility to care for them, who believe that they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you-name-it. That that’s an entitlement. And the government should give it to them. And they will vote for this president no matter what.”

    ~Mitt Romney

    • muselet

      Mitt Romney: a man who can manage to be wrong, even when he’s right.

      It’s a gift.

      –alopecia

      • Aynwrong

        Nicely done.

  • muselet

    I’d feel slightly better about all the money being funneled to agriculture if I heard even a peep of protest from the agricultural industry at the Trump administration’s policies, such as they are, which caused the harm in the first place. (Yes, I do keep repeating that sentiment.)

    –alopecia

  • katanahamon

    I’m sure the “farmer/rancher” Senators and congressmen are lining up to be the first in line to receive benefits, along with the major industrial farms. The small family owned farms are likely crap out of luck..