Grassley Hopes Trump's Iowa Visit Addresses Farm Policy; Optimistic About Healthcare Bill

Jun 20, 2017

President Donald Trump will be in Cedar Rapids tomorrow. He will tour Kirkwood Community College with Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue and Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross.

The visit will give them a look at advanced agriculture technologies offered in the country’s largest two-year agriculture program, and may offer an opportunity to speak on farm policy.

“I would like to hear him say what he wants to do in regard to renegotiating NAFTA, not to hurt agriculture,” Iowa Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley says. “I’d like to hear him speak about his ideas about the safety net for farmers and the reauthorization of the farm bill.”

Grassley, speaking in a weekly call with reporters, says other issues, including the international role of the United States, may come up in the evening when the president addresses a crowd in downtown Cedar Rapids.

Grassley also addressed criticism that Republican senators working on their version of a healthcare bill have been secretive about its contents. But Grassley is unconcerned about a quick-turnaround time for reading the bill before voting.

“When it comes to understanding what’s in this bill, whether it’s 122 pages (the length of the House-passed bill) or 200 pages, but a lot less than 2700 pages that was in Obamacare,” Grassley says, “you gotta remember, we’ve been debating what’s wrong with Obamacare for seven years and all these problems have been studied thoroughly.”

Grassley says the senate leadership is hoping for a vote before the July 4th holiday recess and he and his staff are working every day to resolve some Iowa-specific concerns about the proposal.