Several farmers today called out Democratic congressional candidate Rita Hart for embracing an anti-Farm bill proposed by Liberal Senators Cory Booker and Elizabeth Warren. According to the Quad-City Times, Hart shared her support for the Farm Systems Reform Act at a campaign event earlier this month. On a call with reporters, the several Iowa farmers made it clear that If Hart supports legislation like that, she either doesn’t understand Agriculture or if she does, she would not be an ally to farmers if elected to congress. 

Iowa State Senator and farmer Ken Rozenboom gave some opening remarks on the call. He explained the legislation, “Well, the Farm Systems Reform Act would place a moratorium on large concentrated animal feeding operations or CAFOs and begin to phase them out by the year 2040. The bill defines large CAFOs as having at least 1,000 cattle, 2,500 hogs, or 82,000 laying hens. And I think it’s important to note that thousands of Iowa farms would surpass those levels.”

He continued, “Cory Booker says the bill is meant to strengthen small and independent farms. In reality, in my view, it would wipe out thousands of family farms in Iowa, and it would limit our farmers’ and producers’ capabilities to meet the demand for supply and, therefore, raise prices at the grocery stores.”

“It would limit Iowa farmers’ capabilities to grow their operations and bring the next generation into farming. It would destroy the market for Iowa’s corn and soybeans and would destroy tens of thousands of jobs for Iowans. This bill would be devastating for Iowa,” Rozenboom stated

State Senator Annette Sweeney, who is also a farmer, spoke up on the call. She shared that the way hogs are raised today is a win-win because not only are the pigs treated better today than they were in the past, hog farming supports other aspects of agriculture, including using local corn and soybeans, and even the byproducts of ethanol.

“My concerns now with what is going on with this bill, the Farm Systems Reform Act and Rita Hart jumping on board with Cory Booker, I look at those two as out of touch,” remarked Sweeney

“I also look at Rita Hart as a reactionary pawn on what she has been doing. Has she been out visiting with anybody and with Cory Booker’s saying, ‘Oh, yeah, I’m going to empower you, you know.’ He’s not. He is going to strip our young farmers for the ability to be able to come home to the family farm and continue that legacy.”

Emily Snider, a fourth-generation farmer in Johnson County, Iowa, was the last to speak on the call. She shared that she thinks the best way for the next generation of farmers to get into this business and succeed is through livestock as it allows them to raise the money they need to start their careers. 

“The Farm System Reform Act is extremely hurtful for livestock production for farmers. Hearing Cory Booker and Elizabeth Warren write legislation against Iowa farmers shows me that they do not know much about the farm industry,” said Snider, who grows crops, corn, and soybeans. She also raises livestock on her family farm. 

“The way Rita Hart is embracing this act is even worse because she thinks this would be good for Iowa when it would be devastating for Iowa. This also shows me that she does not believe in or support farmers,” noted Snider.

Editors note, New Jersey Senator Cory Booker is a vegetarian, and it’s unlikely that he would know a Boar from a Sow.