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Montana Ag: Trump addresses values at American Farm Bureau Convention

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Farmers and ranchers attending the American Farm Bureau Federation's annual convention this week in Nashville were treated to an address from President Donald Trump.

"You know, the last sitting president to speak to the American Farm Bureau Convention was President George H.W. Bush twenty-five years ago," Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue said.

Perdue welcomed Trump to the convention and said his attendance sends a strong message to rural America.

"It's an indication of what this President thinks about your organization, you as people, and what you do for the United States economy," he said.

Once on stage, the President did not waste time in praising farmers and ranchers for enduring values.

"The men and women in this room come from different backgrounds and from all across our land but each of you carries the same title that's been proudly born by patriots, pioneers, inventors, and entrepreneurs, the title of very proudly American farmer," Trump said. "Thank you very much."

Gretchen Schubert is from Huntley and said she is interested in the inheritance of the family farm.

"That means so much to me," Schubert said. "My son and daughter-in-law are back home helping with the ranch and to know that succession and to my grandchildren will still continue means the world to me."

The President said that with every decision his administration makes, they're honoring America's proud farming legacy.

"Years of crushing taxes, crippling regulations, and corrupt politics left our communities hurting, our economy stagnant, and millions of hardworking Americans completely forgotten," he said.

The statement resonated well with farmers and ranchers in attendance, especially young producers.

According to Circle native Gill Gasper, there's some optimism in agriculture. 

"Just based on rolling back some of the rules and regulations that we're facing every day," Gasper said. "Allowing producers to get back to work and doing what they do and that's feeding the world and taking care of their families and operations."

As for the new Farm Bill, the President promised it would continue to provide a safety net for producers who are now entering their fifth year of declining incomes. 

Trump added that NAFTA and other trade agreements account for roughly a quarter of U.S. agriculture revenues. He said he's working very hard to get a better deal for farmers, ranchers, and manufacturers. 

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