FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 17, 2005
Contact: Sandy Courtnage
MFU Disappointed in Senator Burns Vote
GREAT FALLS, MT (March 17, 2005) – The Montana Farmers Union (MFU) today expressed profound disappointment in Senator Conrad Burns’ no vote on Senator Max Baucus’ amendment to strike the reconciliatory instructions to cut the agriculture budget by $2.8 billion for FY2006.
“We are extremely disappointed in Senator Burns’ vote today,” said MFU President Brooks Dailey. “We view this vote as a vote against Montana agriculture,” said Dailey, “and a vote against the contract the U.S. government has struck with American farmers and ranchers through the 2002 farm bill.”
MFU does not believe that agriculture spending is the cause of the federal deficit, and it should not bear a disproportionate share of responsibility for eliminating it. If other federal programs and policies had been as fiscally responsible as agriculture, we would not be in the budget mess that we are in.
“More than $17 billion has been saved in the first three years of the farm bill’s implementation,” said Dailey. “With agriculture spending being less than 1 percent of the total U.S. budget, it should not be asked to shoulder 25 percent of the proposed budget cuts.”