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From: TSS (216-119-132-109.ipset12.wt.net)
Subject: Re: VENEMAN RESIGNS AFTER HER MISHANDLING OF THE MAD COW (BSE) IN THE USA
Date: November 15, 2004 at 1:12 pm PST

In Reply to: Re: VENEMAN RESIGNS AFTER HER MISHANDLING OF THE MAD COW (BSE) IN THE USA posted by TSS on November 15, 2004 at 11:17 am:

Veneman: not popular with farmers after all

By Dan Looker
Business Editor
Successful Farming magazineVeneman: not popular with farmers after all

By Dan Looker
Business Editor
Successful Farming magazine

Shortly after President George W. Bush's re-election, Agriculture Secretary Ann Veneman's name appeared on lists of cabinet officials who might be leaving the administration. Apparently, many farmers shared the view that she should go.

Although Veneman worked hard for Bush's re-election, especially in swing states such as Ohio, she enjoyed no coat-tail popularity. Some 69% of visitors to Agriculture Online who responded to a pre-election poll favored Bush. The exact same percentage wanted Veneman out in the days after the election.

When free-lance writer and farmer Jim Meade asked Agriculture Online's Farm Business Talk group why Veneman was unpopular, Arkansas farmer, Tom Burnham replied, "Because she is a corporate lackey."

Others posting comments said she supported the Pork Checkoff after farmers voted it out and fought country of origin labeling on behalf of meat packers. She was also criticized for slow implementation of parts of the 2002 Farm Bill. Delays in rules for the Conservation Security Program were criticized by many farm groups as well as former Senate Agriculture Committee chair, Tom Harkin (D-IA).

Veneman is also criticized on Agriculture Online's Farm Business Talk group for doing a poor job of negotiating better trade agreements for US agriculture. (That is mainly the job of US Trade Representative negotiators but Veneman was involved).

Some farm groups were disappointed that Veneman's USDA didn't take a more active role in helping to write the 2002 Farm Bill, says one congressional staffer. "USDA's asleep. That was the phraseology at the time," the staffer says.

Yet, he adds, Veneman may have also had one of the most difficult jobs as ag secretary since Henry Wallace, who had to protect the nation's food supply under FDR during World War II. Veneman, too, has had to worry about food security from bioterrorism, as well as protecting the nation's livestock from Britain's outbreak of foot and mouth disease at the beginning of Bush's first t erm and Mad Cow disease near the end of it.

Share your views about Secretary Veneman or read others' in Farm Business Talk: What's wrong with Ann Veneman?

This article will appear in the December issue of Successful Farming magazine in the UpFront section
11/15/2004 02:26 p.m.CDT

http://www.agriculture.com/default.sph/AgNews.class?FNC=goDetail__ANewsindex_html___52882___1

TSS



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