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Edited by: CQ Press

In: Congress and the Nation, 1985-1988, Vol. VII: The 99th and 100th Congresses

Chapter : Agricultural Policy

Edited by: CQ Press


Subject: Congress

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Agricultural Policy
Agricultural policy

President Reagan in 1985-88 continued to pursue the goals for U.S. agriculture that governed his farm program agenda in 1981-84. He had launched a drive in 1981 to end many Depression-era farm programs, abandoning the assumption of Roosevelt's New Deal that Washington was largely responsible for the well-being of American farmers.

The administration's agriculture proposals essentially remained the same from 1981 through 1988: to drastically cut back federal spending on agriculture and eliminate or radically revise the government's basic policies that had been in effect since the 1930s. The specific targets were government programs that guaranteed minimum prices for farm commodities, supplemented farmers' income and subsidized farmers who reduced their surplus crops.

Despite these goals, federal spending on agriculture continued to rise in the 1980s ...

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