As a U.S. Senator, candidate Jon Bruning said one of the most important things he could do to protect Nebraska farmers is to keep an eye on the farm bill.
“To some degree you have to look out for your own interest,” he said in a phone interview.
Making sure Nebraska doesn’t take a disproportionate hit and protecting Nebraska farmers is important, Bruning said.
Across the state, Bruning said he hears a lot of Nebraskans talking about the size of the national debt.
“I’m very, very concerned that we’re very, very deep in debt and were not moving to cut our spending,” he said.
It’s unsustainable, he said, and this makes common-sense Nebraskans uncomfortable.
Republican. Lives in Lincoln. Age: 43. Nebraska Attorney General, elected 2002, 2006 and 2010.
Background: State senator, elected in 1996 and 2000. Undergraduate and Law Degrees from the University of Nebraska.
Campaign receipts as of March 31: $3,345,055
Bruning said the farm bill drafts “make a lot of sense.”
“They preserve crop insurance and we need crop insurance especially as direct payments go away,” he said.
Many farmers know that direct payments are going away, but also that crop insurance will be there to serve as a safety net, he said.
Bruning also said that the food stamp and agricultural programs should be focused on separately.
Bruning said the Environmental Protection Agency “needs to be reduced in size significantly.”
Although the EPA has provided good things in its 40-year existence, he said, “there are a lot of ridiculous regulatory choices they’ve made.”
Bruning said he has sued the EPA many times as attorney general.
Now, the EPA is trying to get rid of coal, he said.
“Farmers need energy and we need to make sure that the energy is provided as cheaply as possible,” Bruning said, and wind and solar energy aren’t ready yet.
Bruning said it was good that the Obama administration abandoned proposed changes in the Department of Labor that would have affected teenagers working on farms.
“I think it’s good that the Obama administration abandoned their decisions to try to prevent children from working hard,” he said.
Hard work is how you form a good person, Bruning said.
“You learn a lot from working hard,” he said. “That’s what makes Nebraska special.”