Secretary of Agriculture Tom vilsackTom VilsackUSDA: Farm-to-School Programs Help Schools Serve Healthier Meals MONEY OF THE NIGHT: House Prepared to Pass Debt Ceiling Bill MORE said that only 0.1 percent of the coronavirus relief reserved by the Trump administration for American farmers went to black farmers, according to a Washington Post interview published Thursday.
Of the roughly $ 26 billion announced by the Trump administration under the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program, $ 20.8 million went to black farmers, according to Vilsack. The agriculture secretary told the Post that the Trump administration’s response to the coronavirus worsened pre-existing gaps in the US economy.
“We saw that 99 percent of the money went to white farmers and 1 percent to socially disadvantaged farmers, and if you break down how much went to black farmers, that’s 0.1 percent,” Vilsack said. “Look at it another way: the top 10 percent of the country’s farmers received 60 percent of the value of the covid payments. And the bottom 10 percent received 0.26 percent. “
The Post notes that only 1.3 percent of American farmers, about 45,000, are black, indicating a drop of 1 million farmers in the last 100 years.
The American Rescue Plan included $ 5 billion for farmers of color. The Post asked Vilsack why the funds were specifically added to the Biden administration’s coronavirus relief plan.
“Two reasons. One, you have this systemic racism that basically left these people behind and they have never caught up. This is the beginning of addressing that problem. And the second is the gap in the way the relief was distributed. covid, “Vilsack replied.
Republican Senator Lindsey grahamLindsey Olin Graham: Details Missed in Border Debate: The Legal Right to Seek Asylum in the US Graham Seeks Strict Limits on the Asylum System Senate committee advances two Biden environmental nominees (SC) criticized the $ 5 billion fund from the US Rescue Plan for disadvantaged farmers in March, calling the money “repairs.”
“In this bill, if you are a farmer, your loan will be forgiven up to 120 percent of your loan … if you are socially disadvantaged, if you are African American, some other minority. But if you are [a] white person, if you are a white woman, no forgiveness. That is repairs. What does that have to do with COVID? “Graham said during an interview with Fox News.
Graham’s comments drew the ire of House Majority Whip James Clyburn (DS.C.), who accused Graham of ignoring South Carolina’s history of racism.
“We are trying to rescue people’s lives and livelihoods. He should be ashamed of himself. He knows the history of this country and he knows what happened to black farmers … Lindsey should be ashamed.”