/Former ag secretary Dan Glickman talks politics, humor and ‘a commitment to solve problems rather than create them’

Former ag secretary Dan Glickman talks politics, humor and ‘a commitment to solve problems rather than create them’

Bipartisanship, empathy.

And humor — A lot of humor.

These are A pair of of the pillars to the profession of former U.S. Secretary of Agritradition Dan Glickman, Specified by his autobiography, “Laughing at Myself: My Education in Congress, on the Farm, and On The movies.” The e-book was launched June 1, 2021, by the College of Kansas Press and Is out there by way of Amazon and numerous retailers.

Glickman, now 78, served 18 yrs Inside the U.S. House of Representatives. He then was U.S. Secretary of Agritradition from 1995 to 2001 Inside the administration of President Invoice Clinton, who appreciated to introduce him As a Outcome of the primary Jewish ag secretary.

Later, Glickman went on to be chief authorities officer of the Movement Image Affiliation of America, was Vice chairman of the Aspen Institute Congressional Program, a bipartisan convention group To consider insurance coverage policies. He was a senior fellow On the Bipartisan Coverage Center, a bipartisan policy group that promotes “civility in authorities,” and a board member of the World Meals Program-USA. He reprimarys on the board of the Chicago Mercantile Commerce.

In a Zoom interview with Agweek, Glickman, who now lives in Washington, D.C., said his success was from A performance to pay attention, To converse ideas, and to compromise.

Glickman acquired here from an immigrant Jewish househprevious and grew up Inside the Nineteen Fifties in Kansas. As a youth, Glickman said, he accompanied his father when visiting farmers and completely differents, buying scrap iron. Glickman turned a lawyer And commenced his profession with the Securities Commerce Fee and finally was a trial lawyer.

Glickman, educated as a lawyer, was elected to Congress in 1976, the yr Jimmy Carter was elected president, defeating eight-time period incumbent Rep. Garner Shriver, R-Kan. (Each candidates spent $100,000 Inside the race, versus $3 million to $5 million right now, Glickman notes.)

In the e-book, Glickman admits he initially needed to serve on The house Methods and Means or Appropriations committees, however was endorsed by Myrne Roe, his chief of staff and his former Highschool debate coach, To Think about agritradition As a Outcome of of its financial and cultural influence in his district.

Former U.S. Sec. of Agritradition Dan Glickman, a Democrat and former congressman from Kansas, has revealed an autobiography, “Laughing at Myself: My Education in Congress, on the Farm, and On The movies.” The e-book, launched June 1, by the College of Kansas Press, Is out there by way of Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and completely different retailers. He recollects describes how common views assisted agritradition. Submitted photograph.

Roe famous That Every one the people on the Agritradition Committee On the time have been members from small rural states and principally rural and farm districts. She urged him to go on that committee because — Regardless of The very Incontrovertible actuality that he had Tons of agritradition Inside the district — about half of his district was metropolis.

“She said, ‘You can actually be a bridge between rural And concrete pursuits,’” he recalled.

Today, far fewer members of Congress symbolize predominantly rural districts, which makes it Extra sturdy to move farm policy with out connecting it to metropolis pursuits. In 1945, about half of the symbolizeatives symbolizeed rural districts. Today, solely 40 to 50 members are rural, he said.

Agricultural policy has On A daily basis been bipartisan.

“Frankly, it’s solely As a Outcome of of U.S. Senate, which has two senators For every state, that rural pursuits actually get the push thOn They’ve,” he said.

He said the ag committees he served on have been virtually 100% farm state members, and he remembered no black or completely different minority members.

Former U.S. Sec. of Agritradition Dan Glickman, a Democrat and former congressman from Kansas, has revealed an autobiography, “Laughing at Myself: My Education in Congress, on the Farm, and On The movies.” The e-book, launched June 1, by the College of Kansas Press, Is out there by way of Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and completely different retailers. In a June 17, 2021, Zoom interview, he recollects how common views assisted agritradition. Mikkel Pates / Agweek

Glickman famous that, as ag secretary, he was the named defendant Inside the “Pigford vs. Glickman” anti-discrimination legal guidelinesuit. Whereas ”most USDA people have been respectable and tried to do The Neatest factor, there was Tons of discrimination” Over the previous 60 yrs, he said — “notably Inside the South.”

House Ag Committee members right now are more numerous, collectively with the chairman David Scott, D-Ga., an African American promoting agency proprietor who symbolizes An factor of Atlanta and its suburbs..

Bigly the “Heartland” has a Discover your self to be “Republican territory,” Glickman said, which he assumes Isn’t healthful for democracy.

“Half of That is redistricting,” he said.

Politically, Glickman favors the abolition of the Electoral School. Which might take a Constitutional modification, Which might be difficult.

He said President Donald Trump had “Little or no information of food and agritradition factors,” however famous Secretary of Agritradition Sonny Perdue did A great job.

“I really feel (the Electoral School) creates An extreme quantity of alternative for The Sort of chaos We now have seen Inside the final couple of elections,” he said. “I don’t see in A rustic like ours we don’t elect our president by The favored vote.”

He calls the Senate “The good shieldor of small states” in giving rural areas enough political clout. There’s “An extreme quantity Of money in politics” he added, counting both “huge money and small money,” which legally Is taken Beneath consideration free speech.

Glickman waxed nostalgic about his bipartisan efforts in The house and on a Kansas group in Congress that included Republicans Pat Roberts and Bob Dole, both now retired from the U.S. Senate. Dole turned Senate majority chief. When Glickman was Inside the U.S. House, Democrats On A daily basis held A strong majority, serving with Republican presidents.

Clinton, from Arkansas, was “the proverbial good previous boy,” Glickman said. The president “liked farming” and acquired Together with Dole and Roberts.

“We’ve in all probability by no means had a president in enchancmenty occasions who cared as a lot about what was occurring on the farm because he knew these people,” he said.

“We acquired Tons carried out,” Glickman said. “And there was almost no partisanship on these (ag) factors.”

Dole had A strong curiosity in anti-hunger factors, collectively with food stamps And school lunch packages and had reached throughout the celebration aisle to Sen. George McGovern, D-S.D., to move farm funds that served both farmers and the poor.

Glickman turned Considering about commodities markets while sitting on The house Agritradition Committee. He realized the futures market — if farmers correctly used hedges and decisions — might assist farmers shield themselves from some market hazard. He inspired Kansas State College and completely differents To practice farmers on using futures and decisions to hedge their market hazard.

Glickmans said the Sherman and Clayton Acts — anti-notion legal guidelines adopted Inside the Nineteen Twenties, collectively with the Sherman and Clayton Acts — Have not been notably efficient or related When it Includes agritradition.

”These Aren’t straightforward financial factors. They’re actually difficult,” he said.

The U.S. Division of Agritradition has its personal “mini” anti-notion powers Inside the Packers and Stockyards Act, Dealing with worth discrimination and completely different unfair buying and promoting practices. Prior to now yr, congressmen have gone to the Division of Justice to ask for more motion involving agritradition.

‘Big’ consolidation

There was “massive consolidation” in agritradition Inside the previous 50 yrs. Three or 4 meat processors now administration the market, Glickman Recognized.

“We’ve consolidated and scaled up agritradition,” in Some ways, however that’s The identical enchancment as in banking and finance, he said. That’s A precedence for smaller farmers Who’re more topic to pricing selections made by hugeger farmers. One optimistic enchancment is That beforehand two or three yrs there are more smaller farmers coming into the enterprise, he said.

Glickman misplaced his House seat in 1994, Through the “Republican Revolution,” led by former U.S. Rep. Newt Gingrich, R-Ga. It wAs a Outcome of the identical election By which former House Speaker Tom Foley, D-Wash., misplaced. Each have been champions of their wheat state homes. The House since then hasn’t had a Speaker of The house with The identical ag policy focus.

Ag insurance coverage policies have reprimaryed pretty bipartisan, Aside from the previous three yrs with COVID and trade policy disagreements.

“Further money has gone into agritradition Inside the previous three or 4 yrs from the federal authorities than has (been spent) Inside the previous 20 yrs” mixed, Glickman said, As properly as to spending on hunger packages.

He said Democrats Want to spend more time going into rural districts to Research agritradition.

“Farmers work exhausting, And typically alone, and have good instincts about whether or not politicians are real,” he said. “I don’t assume farmers are wanting On A daily basis For people who agree with them, however are Looking for People that Take heed to them.”

Glickman said he assumes the toximetropolis in partisan tradition and politics Could be lessened by guidelines he used — humor and The power to snicker at himself, respect and civility For Tons of Who’ve differing factors of view, Using the “Gpreviousen Rule,” and a dedication To unravel factors pretty than create them.

To buy Glickman’s e-book:

Amazon: https://amzn.to/397jhtP

Barnes & Noble: https://bit.ly/3d3umgH

College Press of Kansas: https://kansaspress.ku.edu/978-0-7006-3213-8.html

Indiebound: https://www.indiebound.org/e-book/9780700632138

Watime periodark Books: https://www.watime periodarke-books.com/e-book/9780700632138

Raven Book Retailer: https://www.ravene-bookstore.com/e-book/9780700632138

Books & Books: https://store.e-booksande-books.com/e-book/9780700632138

Politics & Prose: https://www.politics-prose.com/e-book/9780700632138

Porchlight Books: https://bit.ly/3fVlURQ