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Western Livestock Journal Dec 11, 2020




The state of affairs


Though there may be Supreme Court cases still pending when you read this, it’s looking like President-elect Joe Biden will be our next president.


The foundation of our constitutional republic is our ability as citizens to direct our government through representatives we elect. With tens of millions of citizens lacking confidence in the outcome of a presidential election, it certainly clouds attitudes.


No matter who is president, control of the Senate will be critical. President Donald Trump’s approach has been pro-business, anti-regulation, pro-fossil fuel energy, pro-agriculture and pro-trade.


Under Biden, the Senate would be the last obstacle to the left’s goals of packing the courts, raising taxes, resuming overreaching regulation, implementing the so-called Green New Deal energy agenda discouraging fossil fuel use and adopting big government “solutions.” The left is skeptical of the free market economic system, but expects it to produce the tax revenue it needs for redistribution while continually destroying incentives for economic activity.


Regardless of the election outcome, Trump has left several lasting accomplishments. There are roughly 300 federal justices and the three U.S. Supreme Court justices, all of whom are much more likely to adhere to the Constitution as written.


For the beef industry, just the trade agreement with Japan was monumental. A long-lasting agreement that drastically reduces huge tariffs over time with our top export customer is huge.


South Korea is breathing down Japan’s neck for the top slot and Trump solidified a relationship with another great customer. Regardless of whether political and COVID-related difficulties keep China from purchasing everything they agreed in the Phase One deal, Trump got us in the door with fewer restrictions than thought possible.


The Chinese are becoming familiar with grain-fed beef and are buying more—progress. There are only two major sources of high quality, grain-fed beef and both countries will be working hard to develop that market.


Without Trump’s carrot and stick negotiating push, I’m not sure how negotiations with the UK will go. Their negotiations with the EU have not gone well and are past the supposed deadline. Britain is looking at tariffs, onerous restrictions and extremely long truck lines at checkpoints without a trade agreement...


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