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Farm Groups Monitor Administration Budget Promises

Aim to cut the deficit in half over two years could impact agriculture. Compiled by staff

The Bush administration is talking tough about budget cuts this week as part of his effort to bring down the ballooning budget deficit. As part of that effort every department in the federal government - except defense - could be impacted.

During an interview on Australian television, American Farm Bureau Federation Budget Adviser Pat Wolff, is quoted saying that U.S. agriculture could face a tough challenge in the new year. Wolff notes that "the President's been consistent in saying that he wants to reduce the size of the deficit in half in the next two years, and that he intends a tight budget."

The Australian interpretation of the potential budget cuts and their impact on agriculture is that U.S. farmers may see less in the way of domestic crop supports and export subsidies. Says Wolff: "If you listen to those that are talking the worst-case scenario, some people are projecting that agriculture will be asked to look for places that we cut in ongoing programs."

Wolff was interviewed for the Australian Broadcasting Company (ABC) National Rural News network.

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