Posted: October 12, 2012
Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney put his focus on agriculture and rural policy on Tuesday with the release of an agricultural policy white paper and a visit to an Iowa family farm.
Romney pledged to get a farm bill passed as president and blamed President Obama for the failure of Congress to do so yet, despite the fact that Republican leadership held up getting a bill to the House floor while Democratic leadership got one passed on the Senate side. “The president has to exert the kind of presidential leadership it takes to get the House and Senate together and actually pass a farm bill,” Romney said during his speech to over 1000 supporters at the Koch family farm near Van Meter, Iowa.
Romney’s “vision for a vibrant rural America” includes tax policies to support family farms, expanding agricultural trade, achieving energy independence by 2020, and creating a commonsense regulatory environment. “The regulatory burden under this administration has just gone crazy,” said Romney. “I’m going to put cap on regulation and any new major regulation will have to be approved by Congress.”
Under tax policy, the white paper says Romney will permanently eliminate the estate tax while his trade policy for agriculture includes completing the Trans-Pacific Partnership and pursuing new agreements, specifically in Latin America. His agenda for energy independence includes maintaining the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), “fulfilling the federal government’s commitment to biofuels growers and refiners and providing them the certainty they need to follow through on their investments in promising technologies.”
Listen to Romney speak in Iowa – Mitt Romney in Iowa
While Governor Romney failed to mention biofuels in his speech, he did tell a couple of Iowa Renewable Fuels Association (IRFA) members after his speech that he supported both the RFS and ethanol. The exchange between IRFA President Brad Albin with the Renewable Energy Group (REG) and past president Walt Wendland of Golden Grain Energy and Romney saying “I do support the RFS and ethanol” was captured on video which can be seen below.