Report: Trump Is Mulling A Fourth Bailout For America’s Farmers
Phase one of President Donald Trump’s trade deal with China took effect just last week, but he is already promising another round of federal assistance to American farmers if the benefits of his trade deals take too long to kick in, according to Politico.
Trump tweeted in all-caps on Friday: “If our formally targeted farmers need additional aid until such time as the trade deals with China, Mexico, Canada and others fully kick in, that aid will be provided by the federal government.”
Politico noted that the president “added, erroneously, that the money for the aid would come from tariffs his administration has slapped on billions of dollars of imported goods.” U.S. businesses and consumers are footing the bill for Trump’s tariffs, not China.
The Department of Agriculture has already spent $23 billion bailing out U.S. farmers since the Trump trade wars began, along with “other tariff relief measures like commodity purchases and marketing assistance.”
Farmers should not expect further assistance this year, Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue said again on Thursday during the USDA’s annual Agricultural Outlook Forum in Arlington, Virginia.
“I would not anticipate it,” Perdue said, adding that farmers have "got to farm for the market and what it’s telling them and what their capabilities are from a production perspective.”
The USDA did not respond to Politico’s request for comment on Trump’s most recent tweet.