HIGHLIGHTS: President Obama Speaks on Paul Ryan and Farm Bill During Remarks in Council Bluffs, Iowa
President Obama discussed Rep. Paul Ryan and the farm bill today at a grassroots event in Council Bluffs, Iowa. Obama stated that Congress urgently needs to pass the bill to provide relief and certainty to U.S. farmers and ranchers, but that Ryan is involved with efforts blocking it instead.
Below are excerpts of the president's remarks as prepared for delivery:
On Rep. Paul Ryan as VP Pic:
"He is an articulate spokesperson for Gov. Romney's vision, but the problem is that vision is one that I fundamentally disagree with."
"Gov. Romney and his allies in Congress, they think that if we just get rid of more regulation on big corporations and give more tax breaks to the wealthiest Americans, if we end Medicare as we know it, make it a voucher system, then this is somehow going to lead to jobs and prosperity."
On Farm Bill and Drought in the Midwest:
"Right now folks here in Iowa and across
the heartland are suffering from one of the worst droughts in 50 years. Farmers and ranchers depend on a good crop season to pay the bills and put a roof over their heads, and I know that things are tough right now."
"The best way to help these states is for leaders in Congress to pass a farm bill that not only helps farmers and ranchers respond to natural disasters, but also makes necessary reforms and gives them some long-term certainty. But right now, too many members of Congress are blocking that bill from becoming law. Now, I'm told Governor Romney's new running mate might be around Iowa these next few days. And he's one of those leaders of Congress standing in the way. So if you happen to see Congressman Ryan, tell him how important this farm bill is to Iowa and our rural communities. It's time to put politics aside and pass it right away."
"But the folks suffering from this drought can't wait for Congress to do its job. So in the meantime, I've made sure my Administration is doing everything we can to provide relief to those who need it. Last week, we announced $30 million to help farmers and ranchers, get more water to livestock, and rehabilitate land affected by the drought. Today, we're announcing that the federal government will help livestock producers by purchasing over $150 million worth of meat and fish now, while prices are low, and freeze it for later."