Thursday, May 15, 2008

Clinton, Obama support Farm Bill, but she is more complimentary of it

An earlier version of this item incorrectly said the candidates had voted on the bill.

The Farm Bill is on its way to the White House and a promised veto by President Bush, then a likely override by at least a two-thirds vote of the House and Senate. The Senate voted 81-15 for the bill today. Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama were campaigning and did not vote, but issued statements in favor of the bill, which John McCain opposed.

Clinton issued a press release that strongly endorsed the bill, repeating an endorsement she made last week but saying she favors "closing loopholes that disproportionately benefit wealthy corporate farmers." Barack Obama's release (not available online) said the bill could have been much better, with tighter limits on subsidies and a ban on meatpacker ownership of livestock, but "We cannot make the perfect the enemy of the good." (You know the Democratic race has changed when Obama starts repeating one of Bill Clinton's quntessential quotes.)

McCain was also campaigning and did not vote, but as reported here 10 days ago, he told The Des Moines Register, "At this time, to have an increase in agricultural subsidies when farmers are having higher incomes than at any time in memory, I just think it’s legislation that’s not in keeping with the economic hard times of America where people are losing their homes and their jobs."

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