Yesterday, U.S. Sen. Deb Fischer, R-Neb., announced she would be joining the U.S. Senate Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry Committee. She will fill the vacated seat left by Sen. Luther Strange of Alabama. A Nebraskan hasn't had a seat in the Senate Agriculture Committee since Sen. Ben Sasse announced he was leaving the committee early last year to serve on the Armed Services and Judiciary committees.
Several Nebraska ag groups weighed in on having a Nebraskan on the Senate Ag Committee again. Here's what some of these groups had to say.
"There is tremendous value in having a senator from Nebraska on the Senate Agriculture Committee," says Dan Wesely, president of the Nebraska Corn Growers Association. "American agriculture is in the midst of developing a new farm bill and having Sen. Fischer at the table, actively involved in those discussions will ensure Nebraska's farmers are well represented."
STATE INPUT: Sen. Deb Fischer will be joining the U.S. Senate Ag Committee.
"We want to congratulate Sen. Fischer on her new role with the Senate Agriculture Committee, and we know she will do well in shaping our industry," says Dave Merrell, chairman of the Nebraska Corn Board. "As corn farmers, we have witnessed the dedication Sen. Fischer has had on expanding our nation's ethanol industry, and we look forward to her continued work with the U.S. Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works."
Nebraska Corn is also looking forward to working with Sen. Fischer on additional agricultural issues like trade and crop insurance.
Nebraska Farm Bureau
"The appointment of Sen. Fischer to the Senate Agriculture Committee is tremendous news not just for Nebraska farmers and ranchers, but for farmers and ranchers across our country," says Steve Nelson, Nebraska Farm Bureau president. "As a rancher, and as an individual who has represented the interests of agriculture at all different levels of public service, we could not be more pleased to have her providing leadership and direction to the Senate Agriculture Committee as they begin the task of developing the 2018 Farm Bill. We thank her for her continued commitment and her ongoing efforts to improve the environment in which Nebraska's farm and ranch families work to operate and grow their family businesses."
"We sincerely appreciate Sen. Fischer for her willingness to serve on the Senate Ag Committee," says Nebraska Cattlemen President Galen Frenzen. "Her input and influence will be especially critical as the committee begins debate on 2018 Farm Bill proposals."
Nebraska Cattlemen considers four issues to be of vital importance as Congress undertakes the next farm bill: a fully funded U.S. foot-and-mouth disease vaccine bank; protecting trade promotion programs, such as the Foreign Market Development and Market Access Programs to help develop emerging overseas markets; robust drought and disaster assistance; and opposition to mandatory country-of-origin labeling.
In a statement released by Fischer, she says she would fight for a viable farm safety net, crop insurance and trade opportunities as the Ag Committee writes the next farm bill.
"This coming year is going to be critical as the 2014 Farm Bill expires and the committee works to write the next farm bill," Fischer stated. "Throughout this process, I'm going to continue traveling Nebraska, as I've done for the past five years, and listen to thoughts, suggestions, and concerns from our state's many ag producers. At this important juncture, my priorities will be supporting an affordable and viable farm safety net, safeguarding crop insurance, and expanding trade opportunities for Nebraska producers and their families."
Source: Nebraska Corn, Nebraska Farm Bureau, Nebraska Cattlemen, Sen. Deb Fischer's Office