Romney's Ag statements reminiscent of Kerry
As Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney makes his presidential announcement in Iowa tomorrow it will be interesting to see if he is held to that same standard. In 1994 Romney made statements almost identical to Kerry's. In that race Romney also supported drastic cuts to the department of ag and he also expressed his opposition to farm subsidies. Take a look.
"Romney Backed the virtual elimination of the Energy and Agriculture departments to cut the deficit." (Boston Herald 7/13/94). In a different article that same year Romney said that "federal farm subsidies should be cut." (Boston Globe 11/6/94)
These positions will definitely not endear him to many folks in the farm lobby here in Iowa and elsewhere. While there are certainly fiscal hawks that this type of rhetoric appeals to, eliminating the Department of Ag is not a sustainable position for a presidential candidate. If Romney decides to change his tune on this it will be particularly noteworthy since the issues that he has flipped on to-date have been from a generally more liberal position to a more conservative one. A switch on this topic would be a pander in the other direction.
John McCain has gotten a lot of ink for his opposition to farm subsidies, but to our knowledge Mitt Romney has gone unchallenged on this topic. It will be interesting to see whether he gets pressured on this by the local media or by Matt Drudge as he announces his bid for the presidency in the Hawkeye state tomorrow.