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Stabenow pitches Biden to Michigan farmers

News Photo by Steve Schulwitz Zane Kipfmiller, of Kipfmiller’s Produce and Nursery, today readies locally grown cherries to be put on the store’s shelves. Also today, U.S. sen. Debbie Stabenow shared some goals in Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden’s Vision for Rural Michigan plan. She said Biden will help rework trade deals to help smaller farms and partner with them to help combat climate change.

ALPENA — Presidential candidate Joe Biden wants to help rural areas in Michigan thrive with more focus on improving market conditions for farmers, expanding health care, and protecting and maintaining natural resources, according to U.S. Sen. Debbie Stabenow.

In a videoconference today, Stabenow — like Biden, a Democrat — shared some of the goals laid out in the former vice president’s “Vision for Rural Michigan” plan.

No details or specifics about the plan were shared or what measures could be taken to meet the plan’s goals.

Biden did not attend the virtual meeting.

According to Stabenow, Biden believes rural areas, especially in Michigan, have been overlooked by the current administration. She said the state’s agriculture, health care, small businesses and environment could all use a hand in helping to become more stable.

She said at the top of Biden’s list of goals is helping farmers increase their market and receive fair compensation. She added that subsidy payments made to farmers from the federal government are not what farmers desire.

Instead, Stabenow said, they want a level playing field to sell their products in a fair market that doesn’t benefit large-scale agriculture companies. She said President Donald Trump’s trade deals have not benefited most rural growers in the state.

“The trading policies have caused chaos for farmers,” she said. “The farmers want to export their products, not receive government payments. We have one of the most diverse agricultures in the country. We grow everything. Joe understands that we need consistency and good relationships to help make deals that are fair to all farmers in the state, especially our cherry farmers.”

Supporters of Trump’s trade deals say they are fairer for American exporters.

Check back for updates.

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