Fact Check: Pete Buttigieg Claims Donald Trump Does Not Care About Farmers

ATLANTA, GEORGIA - NOVEMBER 20: Democratic presidential candidate South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg speaks during the Democratic Presidential Debate at Tyler Perry Studios November 20, 2019 in Atlanta, Georgia. Ten Democratic presidential hopefuls were chosen from the larger field of candidates to participate in the debate hosted by MSNBC …
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Mayor Pete Buttigieg claimed Wednesday that President Donald Trump did not care about farmers during the fifth Democrat debate.

“I don’t think this president cares one bit about farmers,” he claimed.

Buttigieg’s claim is clearly false, as the president has delivered for farmers in a big way.

Despite the punishing trade war’s effect on agricultural products exported to China, Trump delivered $12 billion to farmers in payments in 2018 and an additional $16 billion in payments in 2019.

The farmers agree.

Fifty-six percent of farmers in a recent Iowa State University poll said they supported imposing tariffs on Chinese products, while only 30 percent opposed them.

The survey featured 693 Iowa, Illinois, and Minnesota farmers from February through June.

It is rare that Trump has a public event without talking about farmers, and he repeatedly includes big purchases of agricultural products in any negotiations with China.

During the outline of a “first phase” trade agreement with China announced in October, Trump said that they agreed to $50 billion in farm purchases.

The first phase agreement has yet to be signed.

Trump also negotiated a new trade deal (USMCA) with Mexico and Canada to replace NAFTA, earning important concessions in favor of American farmers, despite House Democrats failing to put the deal on the floor for a vote.

The president also reversed the Waters of the United States (WOTUS) rule leveled by the Obama administration, a provision that was making it harder for farmers to control their land.

“I had to kill it,” Trump explained during a speech to the New York Economic Club last week. “It made land development prohibitive. It made impossible situations for farmers, for everybody.”

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