Thursday, October 18, 2007

Who Cares About Rural Folks?

As we enter into the final phases of the presidential caucus campaign season in Iowa, the candidates have presented most of their big plans and policy proposals. Be it about health care, Iraq or education, most of the candidates have rolled out their big ideas.

I think any presidential candidate who hasn't presented a policy proposal for any particular issue by late October doesn't show much interest in that issue.

And I think rural/agricultural issues deserve a policy proposal by anyone seeking the votes of those of us who live in flyover country.

So who has presented their detailed plans for rural America?

I'm obviously mostly interested in the Democrats here, so I took a quick look at the websites of the six major Democratic candidates, and found only three of them had a detailed rural issues policy proposal. Those candidates are John Edwards, Chris Dodd and Barack Obama.

Read John Edwards' plan here.

Read Chris Dodd's plan here.

Read Barack Obama's plan here.

I have been told by the Bill Richardson campaign that his rural policy proposal will be released "soon" and I'm eager to see it. Hopefully Biden and Hillary will get something together soon. Waiting this long seems to give the impression that rural and agricultural issues are not a high priority of these candidates.

One of the main reasons I'd like to see these policy proposals soon is the fact that the 2007 Farm Bill is not yet completed. I want to see candidates take a position on some important issues before the Farm Bill is completed, that way we know where they stand if something important fails to make it through this year's Farm Bill.

If I missed one, please let me know. I'd love to see it.

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