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Bernie Sanders announces rural America plan that targets corporate farms

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders announced hi...

Posted: May 6, 2019 9:32 AM

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders announced his plan to support rural America on Sunday, promising to hold factory farms and corporate agribusiness accountable by strengthening regulations to protect smaller family farms.

"I come from one of the most rural and the most beautiful states in the United States, I will not write off rural America," the Vermont senator told a cheering crowd in Osage, Iowa.

"Maybe I'm kind of radical here, but I think a farmer who produces the food that we eat is maybe almost as important as some crook on Wall Street who destroys the economy," he added.

In his remarks, Sanders lamented how many small farmers are often at the financial mercy of a single buyer or supplier setting prices.

"Agribusiness conglomerates extract as much wealth out of small communities as they possibly can while family farmers are going bankrupt and in many ways are being treated like modern day indentured servants," he said.

Sanders promised "an immediate moratorium on agribusiness mergers" should he be elected and an attorney general willing to "break up large agribusiness corporations."

He committed to sweeping anti-trust protections for family farmers from "corporate middle men" and seed companies, as well as new laws that protect small farmers from "predatory patent lawsuits," and allow them to sue companies that contaminate neighboring farms with genetically altered crops.

Sanders also vowed to restore the agency that enforced anti-trust laws in the meatpacking industry -- which Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue slashed as a stand-alone agency in 2017.

On pollution emissions, Sanders said he would hold factory farms accountable for such pollution by strictly enforcing the Clean Water Act and Clean Air Act.

He also slammed corporate agricultural lobbyists, promising to combat their efforts funneling Agriculture Department subsidies toward a handful of powerful farmers or landowners.

"We will cap those subsidies coming from Washington and make sure they are targeted to the farmers who need that help, not to these profitable agribusiness corporations," he said.

Sanders also emphasized the ties between agriculture and other policy fields including national security, climate change and immigration.

He warned against foreign companies and countries buying up American cropland as a national security threat, promising to regulate the practice and put the agriculture secretary "on the national security panel that regulates foreign investments in the United States."

He also advocated for legislation to help farmers transition to "regenerative, independent family framing practices" to help foster soil carbon absorption and to provide disaster relief to farmers who have suffered from flooding and other natural disasters.

On immigration, Sanders called for a path to citizenship and expanded visas for undocumented farm workers, as well as an end to workplace immigration raids.

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 1560117

Reported Deaths: 20796
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion2118112563
Lake1021301523
Allen964791027
Hamilton75541551
St. Joseph66476761
Elkhart51045634
Vanderburgh50511531
Tippecanoe45721338
Johnson39600527
Hendricks37933463
Porter35132476
Madison30330547
Clark27296331
Vigo26401347
Monroe24100249
LaPorte23921313
Howard23237381
Delaware22453370
Hancock19314220
Bartholomew18980216
Kosciusko18400204
Warrick17733216
Wayne16982303
Floyd16686257
Grant15966300
Morgan15091232
Boone13924138
Dearborn12235113
Shelby12225152
Noble12170142
Henry12027202
Dubois11696152
Marshall11625171
Jackson11111104
Cass10578143
Lawrence10529221
Huntington10523140
DeKalb10482132
Gibson10114127
Montgomery9671144
Harrison9471117
Knox9415125
Whitley902571
Steuben8934105
Putnam8542100
Miami8533135
Clinton849397
Jasper8462116
Jefferson8319127
Wabash8027140
Ripley7504117
Scott685787
Adams6829103
Daviess6825130
White638184
Greene6317112
Clay628975
Decatur6261121
Jennings619781
Wells6090121
Fayette6054122
Posey580148
LaGrange549097
Randolph5364129
Washington528071
Owen5211100
Fountain493681
Spencer467456
Sullivan462066
Fulton450993
Orange449784
Starke448887
Rush433941
Jay432564
Perry409155
Carroll394749
Franklin394650
Vermillion370762
Pike334246
Parke331239
Tipton330475
Blackford282255
Pulaski281775
Brown239856
Newton239761
Benton228921
Crawford224932
Switzerland207914
Martin196722
Warren183922
Union178119
Ohio129216
Unassigned0763

Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 2515949

Reported Deaths: 31987
CountyCasesDeaths
Franklin2719422100
Cuyahoga2606673087
Hamilton1758091756
Montgomery1177451651
Summit1089011418
Lucas935321193
Butler83907963
Stark771001431
Lorain64214809
Warren53428489
Mahoning51224930
Lake47591611
Clermont46928452
Delaware41107220
Trumbull39746790
Licking38790416
Medina38646427
Fairfield35828349
Greene34313435
Portage32429366
Clark32361453
Richland29653444
Wood29379301
Allen25875403
Miami24243408
Muskingum23564255
Columbiana23046409
Wayne22093365
Tuscarawas19637428
Marion18616235
Erie18608224
Ashtabula18569362
Scioto18159214
Ross17594260
Pickaway16419181
Hancock16115232
Geauga15511229
Lawrence15094186
Belmont14236248
Union1419584
Huron13908184
Jefferson13656261
Sandusky13268200
Athens12877107
Knox12160201
Seneca12055204
Darke11440202
Ashland11248184
Washington11152172
Auglaize10873147
Crawford10432178
Shelby10402160
Brown10094145
Highland9746151
Fulton9726154
Guernsey9683122
Defiance9567137
Logan9470147
Clinton9428132
Mercer9099112
Madison9032111
Preble8524170
Williams8305138
Putnam8069136
Champaign8040113
Ottawa7971123
Jackson7848121
Perry7514102
Coshocton7411136
Morrow729184
Fayette715992
Pike666689
Hardin6564133
Gallia638891
Adams6227127
Van Wert6065121
Henry602596
Hocking5918105
Wyandot503594
Carroll5009101
Holmes4880167
Paulding426465
Meigs400974
Monroe316468
Harrison299162
Noble296952
Morgan292748
Vinton258646
Unassigned08
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