Bill Name: Deficit Reduction: Agriculture
Bill Description: A Bill to Change US Farm Policy to Help Small Family Farmers, Rather than Large Corporate Farmers, to Reduce the Deficit, and for Other Purposes.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

This Act may be cited as the `The Revitalizing Family Farms Act'.

SEC. 2. FINDINGS

The Congress finds that--

(1) US Farm Policy is currently is currently weighted heavily in favor of corporate farmers and millionaires and against small family farmers. From 1995 to 2005, the top 1% of subsidy recipients received 24% of the benefits, for an average payment of $1,221,071. From 1995 to 2005, the top 10% of subsidy recipients received 73% of the benefits, for an average payment of $376,095. From 1995 to 2005, the bottom 80% of subsidy recipients received only 12% of the benefits, for an average payment of only $7,749.

(2) In the report "A Safety Net for Farm Households" (Economic Research Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture. Agricultural Economic Report No. 788.), the US Department of Agriculture finds that "Government assistance to the farm sector provides relatively little to small farms. Instead, most government assistance is to larger farms." Furthermore, the US Department of Agriculture estimates that instead, it would cost $4 billion per year to bring the income of every full-time farmer in the United States to 185 percent of the federal poverty level, or $7.8 billion per year to bring the income of everyone who reports farm income in the United States, including hobbyist farmers and those with other full time jobs, to 185 percent of the federal poverty level.

(3) By distorting trade in agricultural commodities, current US Farm Policy along with the European Union's Common Agricultural Policy makes it much more difficult for farmers in the third world to compete, contributing significantly to poverty and underdevelopment in the third world. Current US Farm Policy also increases the price of food for US consumers.

(4) On March 3, 2005, the World Trade Organization's Appellate Body ruled in the case DS267 that US Cotton subsidies are illegal. Similar rulings can be expected in the future for other commodities. If changes are not made, the US faces possible international trade sanctions.

SEC. 3. FARM SERVICE AGENCY AND COMMODITY CREDIT CORPORATION COMMODITY SUBSIDY PROGRAMS.

(1) USDA Farm Service Agency and Commodity Credit Corporation commodity subsidy programs are eliminated, for savings of $21,953,000,000 (FY 2007).

SEC. 4. AUTHORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS.

(1) There are authorized to be appropriated up to $4,000,000,000 for direct payments to full-time American farmers, to bring the income of every full-time farmer in the United States to at least 185 percent of the federal poverty level.

(2) There are authorized to be appropriated up to $4,000,000,000 for direct payments to full-time American farmers, or to part-time and hobbyist American farmers, to bring the income of people reporting farm income but with other full-time jobs and hobbyist farmers to at 185 percent of the federal poverty level, and/or to bring the income of every full-time farmer in the United States to at higher than 185 percent of the federal poverty level, at the discretion of the Secretary of Agriculture.

SEC. 4. EFFECT ON THE BUDGET.

(1) The enactment of this bill will save $13,953,000,000 for the Federal Budget, while helping family farmers.

Respectfully Submitted,

Sen. Ben Cardin (D-MD)
Bill Author: Ben Cardin (D-MD)
Aye: 85
Nay: 2
Present: 10

Senators voting Aye:
Scott (R-AL)
Ralph Alan (R-AL)
Matthew Faustini A1 (R-AK)
Addison McConnell (R-AK)
Chuck Norris Eleden (D-AZ)
DFA3 (C-AZ)
Mike Huckabee (R-AR)
Eduardo Ramirez (D-CA)
Robert BettisCA (R-CA)
Savant (D-CO)
dzgCO (R-CO)
paragon12321 (D-CT)
Glen Davis (D-DE)
Davis Vitter Mason (D-DE)
Elvish Magi (D-FL)
Christopher Richards (D-FL)
Reaper (D-GA)
Liz Girard GA (R-GA)
whatdoyouwant73 (D-HI)
Dakota BIock (R-HI)
Matthew Faustini ID2 (R-ID)
Marq'd4Death2 (R-ID)
Bobby Kennedy (D-IL)
Marq'd4Death3 (R-IN)
Senor Needles (R-IA)
Jerry Brown (D-IA)
Viagra Dole (L-KS)
Socialist Sebelius (L-KS)
FVPIX (R-KY)
dfa01 (C-KY)
Drew Brees (R-LA)
M. Broussard (R-LA)
Miles Porter (D-ME)
TomHatesSusanCollins (D-ME)
Krispy (D-MD)
Ben Cardin (D-MD)
Shane (D-MA)
Chas Ford (D-MI)
TomLovesCarlLevin (D-MI)
Michael Jay (D-MN)
Michael Jay 2 (D-MN)
Angela Merkel (R-MS)
Quien es (D-MS)
dj brown jr (D-MO)
Sod-Off Baldrick (D-MT)
NebulaWorld (D-MT)
Rob-NE2 (R-NE)
UsamaBinForgotted (D-NV)
Kat Scratch Fever (R-NV)
Jed Bartlet (D-NH)
Martin (R-NH)
Ed Diaz (D-NJ)
Savant NJ (D-NJ)
BillRichardson (D-NM)
Ron Goatse (L-NM)
Senator Elvish Magi (D-NY)
James B. Weaver (D-NY)
Stetson Kennedy (D-NC)
D. Hobson (R-ND)
Begoner4 (D-ND)
Stryker (D-OH)
Pedophile Eleden (D-OH)
VitterOk (R-OK)
Corey Bowen OK (C-OK)
Chas Wyden (D-OR)
Elos (D-OR)
Frank Rizzo (D-PA)
Tony Benn (D-RI)
Degree1 (D-RI)
RedBishop (R-SC)
dzgSC (R-SC)
Bill Buckner (R-SD)
FVPXXIV (R-TN)
RoB-TN (R-TN)
dope2 (L-UT)
dope1 (L-UT)
Progressivevoice (D-VT)
Progressivevoice jr. (D-VT)
Harry Byrd (D-VA)
southergentleman (R-VA)
Shane Vaughn-Dugan (D-WV)
Coal Miner (D-WV)
Mil Best (R-WI)
Brett Favre (D-WI)
Sox Marshal (R-WY)

Senators voting Nay:
John Winters (D-PA)
Hr_Sveka (R-SD)

Senators answering "Present":
Beth Ariane (D-AR)
NebulaState (D-CT)
paragon12322 (D-IL)
It'sbucket (R-IN)
DeRoyalgop (R-NE)
Joker of the Atlantic (R-NC)
dziggetai (R-TX)
Lone Star Husky (R-TX)
David Miller (D-WA)
The Tick (R-WY)

Senators not voting yet:
Roseanne Connor (G-MA)
Nathan Fletcher (R-MO)
twoodard (D-WA)