The federal government has a long history of helping farmers, subsidizing those who agree to grow certain crops and helping to cover losses during bad years. It’s been going on since the heyday of FDR’s New Deal in 1933.
But the most recent Farm Bill shows the bulk of its $96.2 billion cost went elsewhere. $77.6 billion in 2011 went to the food stamp program known as SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program). Just $13.44 billion went to programs for farmers.
Current funding has been extended through the end of 2013, while Congress considers a new Farm Bill. Budget concerns have legislators again taking aim at the farm bill and the programs it funds. There’ a move in the Senate to completely eliminate farm subsidies.
Check out today's slideshow for more on Farm Bill politics. See “What Do Others Say?” for more views, then add to the discussion below. How do you feel about agriculture subsidies? Is the Farm Bill still worthy of the name?