WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Pat Roberts, R-Kan., Chairman of the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry, today released the following statement after the U.S. Department of Agriculture announced up to $12 billion in assistance to farmers impacted by tariffs.
“Given the low prices farmers have been facing, the tariff situation is making things worse for producers as we speak,” Roberts said. “Trade remains the single best solution to the tough economy in farm country. I will look closely at the President’s assistance proposal, but I hope that the Administration is also working to quickly resolve the tariff situation and restore the export markets our farmers, ranchers, and growers rely on.”
In the Senate Farm Bill, Chairman Roberts worked to improve and expand trade promotion programs, such as the Market Access Program and the Foreign Market Development Program.
“We need to work together to finalize and pass a Farm Bill for our producers,” Roberts said. “The Administration’s announcement underscores the tough times we face in agriculture with low prices, surpluses, and uncertain trade circumstances. It is all the more reason to put politics aside and provide farmers and ranchers with a Farm Bill to give them certainty and predictability.”
From his post as both Chairman of the Agriculture Committee and as a senior member of the Finance Committee, which has jurisdiction on trade, Roberts has long been outspoken on the benefits of increased access to foreign markets for American farmers and ranchers – taking his concerns directly to President Trump, U.S. Trade Representative Bob Lighthizer, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, and other high-ranking officials in the Administration.