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2009-07-09 digital edition

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2009-07-09 / General Stories

TFB Thanks Texas Democrats For Voting "No" On Energy Tax

The president of the Texas Farm Bureau said last week that the three Texas democratic congressmen who voted against the climate change bill "showed extraordinary political courage" in doing so.

"Congressmen Chet Edwards, Ciro Rodriguez and Solomon Ortiz are to be congratulated for voting their conscience on the climate change bill," said Kenneth Dierschke, president of the state's largest farm organization. "This bill is an energy tax, and farmers and ranchers have no way of passing on the increased costs they will incurbecause of it."

Prior to consideration by the House of Representatives, Chairman Collin Peterson of the House Agriculture Committee gained some major concessions from bill sponsors. While these provisions improved the bill in the view of farmers and ranchers, it was not enough to gain agriculture's overall support.

The concessions included indirect land use evaluations, regulatory authority by USDA for agriculture offsets, and allowances for prior commitments on carbon dioxide emissions. According to the American Farm Bureau Federation, this bill will result in a $5 billion loss of income for farmers annually, beginning in the year 2020.

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