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Republicans Fight Their Core Convictions When It Comes To Wisconsin Dairy Farmers

April 27, 2017

There has been some interesting back-and-forth over the past weeks as news of a number of dairy farmers in the state feeling the pinch of having their product processed.  The latest column that deserves a read–in light of how conservatives see the role of government one day and then switch views on another day–comes from the desk of Chris Rickert.   I also had posted on this matter on April 6th and asked the same type of questions.

So now that Canada has effectively cut purchases of ultra-filtered Wisconsin milk, the state Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection wants the federal government to create demand for dairy by buying stored cheese and butter for its nutritional aid programs, such as food banks and the school lunch program. Republican Gov. Scott Walker has also appealed to President Donald Trump for help.

Those are curious moves for a government controlled by free-market Republicans, and ironic for a DATCP that has revived enforcement of a state law restricting the sale of Irish- and Ohio-made butter in the state. Canada’s actions shouldn’t be allowed to hurt Wisconsin’s dairy farmers, apparently, but Wisconsin’s should be allowed to hurt out-of-state buttermakers.

Also this month, a group of state Assembly Republicans including Speaker Robin Vos and budget committee co-chairman John Nygren sent a letter to UW System President Ray Cross urging the System to research more uses for milk.

Looking to the eggheads for advice on climate change or water levels in the Central Sands region hasn’t been a priority for Republicans, although it appears the System is expected to play a key role in the dairy economy.

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