Pro Farmer Extra
- From the Editors of Pro Farmer newsletter
Jan. 4, 2013
Crazy Days Ahead for in Washington
The next 60 to 90 days of sparring in Washington will make the fiscal cliff look like a hop across a mid-summer-2012 creek. Some insights from PF Washington consultant Jim Wiesemeyer:
• The next 60-90 days will determine the fate of House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio). He says he won’t negotiate with President Obama. Now we’re going to see Boehner’s real strategy. After dealing with a scattered herd regarding taxes in fiscal cliff talks, he’ll corral the House GOP Caucus in a tighter circle on spending-reduction efforts.
• House Republicans will insist on one-for-one spending cuts against the increase in the debt limit. True cuts. Without true cuts, the GOP won’t go along. With no agreement, President Obama will issue an executive order to raise the debt ceiling. That will send it to the courts, eventually landing it on the Supreme Court docket. (Another test for so-called conservative Judge John Roberts?) Get ready.
• Obama and Democrats will continue to push for more tax hikes. One such area will be an increase (perhaps a big one) in Social Security payroll taxes. Not in the rate (which already increased two percentage points on Jan. 1), but in the maximum salary it applies to.
• The new farm bill will be linked to what’s coming in the next few months, despite denial by Senate Ag Chairwoman Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.). House Ag Chair Frank Lucas (R-Okla.) knows full well the Ag panels won’t even be asked to the table until they know how much spending must be cut.
• It won’t happen this year, but means testing will come to the crop insurance program. Taxpayers pay 62% of the buy-up premium, which lands the program squarely on the list of items to be reduced. Count on it. (We just don’t know when or by how much.)
Make plans now to attend one of these Profit Briefings! The 2012-13 schedule of Profit Briefing Seminars (sponsored by DuPont Pioneer) stretches across the Midwest and into the South this year. And we’ve added a session to the agenda — Pro Farmer Inputs Monitor Reporter Davis Michaelsen will provide our fertilizer and fuel price outlook and buying recommendations for spring 2013.
Profit Briefings feature farm bill and Washington outlooks; economic and farmland perspectives from LandOwner Editor Mike Walsten and crop and livestock market updates from the PF editors. We hope to see you at one of these meetings! Call Shelley at 1-800-772-0023 for more information and to register.
Jan. 8: Owatonna, Minnesota
Jan. 9: Independence, Iowa
Jan. 15: Lafayette, Indiana
Jan. 16: Peoria, Illinois
Follow Pro Farmer Editor Chip Flory on Twitter: @ChipFlory
To see more of what Pro Farmer has to offer, be sure to visit www.profarmer.com.