Democrats use farm bill in new Senate ads
September 25th, 2012
01:59 PM ET
2 years ago

Democrats use farm bill in new Senate ads

(CNN) – The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee on Tuesday released two new television ads attacking Republican Rep. Rick Berg in North Dakota's tight Senate race.

Both commercials blast the congressman over the House Republicans' recent decision not to vote on the so-called farm bill until after the elections.

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"My grandfather, he homesteaded on this quarter," Les Franklund, a resident of the state, says in one of the ads. "It's our way of life out here. In Washington, it must be easy to lose sight of what's happening here in North Dakota."

House Speaker John Boehner indicated last week that GOP leaders do not believe they currently have the votes to pass either a short-term extension or a more comprehensive five-year measure.

The current five-year law establishing various levels of federal support for farmers and ranchers - now struggling with drought in many parts of the country - expires September 30.

A failure to pass a new law won't impact existing federal support in 2012, though it would have a significant impact on agricultural markets in 2013.

Berg, the state's sole U.S. representative, is running against Democrat and former state attorney general Heidi Heitkamp for the open Senate seat to replace retiring Sen. Kent Conrad, a Democrat.

"(Berg's) not thinking about my farm, or my family," the man says in the ad.

Republicans argue the bill costs too much and includes far more money for food stamps than necessary. Berg, however, has said he's "frustrated with the Republican leadership" on the issue.

"We have to get a five-year, long-term bill passed. I'm really disappointed," Berg told CNN last week. "Agriculture is one of our bright shining spots in America right now, and we don't need to put this cloud of uncertainty over it."

The congressman argued that GOP leaders should have allowed a full House vote on the Agriculture Committee measure.

Asked about the farm bill's legislative prospects in the post-election lame duck session of Congress, Berg said, "I look back over history and this is more normal than not. ... I'm just doing everything I can do."

The new commercials mark the sixth and seventh ads the DSCC has aired in North Dakota since April. They're part of a $3 million ad buy, according to a source that tracks ad buys.

While Republicans consider the seat a potential pick up for the GOP this year, Democrats are aggressively fighting to keep the seat in their hands as the defend their majority in the chamber.

"We don't vote the party line. We vote for who we feel will do the best for us. Heidi Heitkamp has a record we can be proud of," Judi Hintz, a North Dakota resident, says in the other ad.

Political handicappers Stuart Rothenberg and Charlie Cook both rank the race as a toss-up.


Filed under: 2012 • Ads • DSCC • North Dakota
soundoff (14 Responses)
  1. truth hurts

    Democrats caring about the rural and agricultural parts of this country??? Next joke. They only care about the Senate seat and keeping Harry Reid in a position where he can cover for and protect a failing President.

    September 25, 2012 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  2. truth hurts

    BTW, best picture of Nancy Pelosi we've seen on the Ticker!

    September 25, 2012 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
  3. Thomas

    @truth hurts
    Democrats caring about the rural and agricultural parts of this country??? Next joke. They only care about the Senate seat and keeping Harry Reid in a position where he can cover for and protect a failing President

    ---

    Yes the Dems have done more to improve farming practices.

    September 25, 2012 02:12 pm at 2:12 pm |
  4. John, PA

    No surprise; Democrats whining, Democrats can’t get anything done, blah blah blah, that’s why we will vote them OUT.

    September 25, 2012 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  5. Sniffit

    "House Speaker John Boehner indicated last week that GOP leaders do not believe they currently have the votes to pass either a short-term extension or a more comprehensive five-year measure."

    Translation: "We need to find out who wins in November beacuse our decision on whether to support or block it depends 100% on who gets to take the credit."

    September 25, 2012 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  6. Sniffit

    "expires September 30."

    Aaaaah, well, nothing says "country first" like "we need to cause rising food prices for the month or so heading into the election in hopes it helps our chances when we blame the rising food prices on the Dems."

    September 25, 2012 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  7. Wes Scott

    With friends like Republicans who needs enemies?

    September 25, 2012 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  8. Griff.

    "Who is Farmer Bill?? It's a nice photo of Obama up above!"

    September 25, 2012 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  9. MaryM

    Hmmmm, Repubs just like the VETS jobs bill that would help Americas Vets, You just could not pass that one either. huh Repubs. What a bunch of partisan hacks the repubs are. They put their party first over America, even Americas Vets. Shame , Shame repubs.

    September 25, 2012 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  10. Ronda in Houston,TX

    That's right, call them rascals out...

    September 25, 2012 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  11. Griff.

    "Yes when I watch Fox News, I get the impression less that %90 would ever dream of Voting for Obama!!
    So you see, it all depends on who you listen to!!"

    September 25, 2012 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  12. Griff.

    "If kids want to borrow funds to go to college, them I'm afraid they're going to be a little more choosy! You can't expect
    tax-payers to pay for tuition that was wasted! You can't apply for courses, there is no way it can have any use!
    Some kids think they can spend any amount of Tax-Payers money, until they pass??? No!!! It is up to the system, to interview kids more, before they even take a course!!"

    September 25, 2012 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  13. Sniffit

    "Democrats can’t get anything done"

    Did you even read the article? Boehner is in control of the House, the GOP has a large majority in the House and Boehner's excuse for not bringing the bill up for a vote is that he can't get the votes. What part do you need help with in terms of using those facts to understand that this is the GOP/Teatrolls blocking the farms bill from happening?

    September 25, 2012 03:21 pm at 3:21 pm |
  14. Obamacare = Obama cares about the young, elderly, poor and disabled. Romneycare = "I don't care about the poor"!

    What a moooving picture Queen Ann overlooking the serfs and their crops.

    September 25, 2012 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |