Mike Mansfield Papers, Series 21, Box 50, Folder 80, Mansfield Libary, University of Montana
THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 13, 1975
TilE RUSSIAN WHEAT DEAL
Mr. MANSPIEI,O Mr. Prestdent, for
some Ume I have been concerned about
the wheat deal which the admlnlstratlon
rea.ched with the Soviet Union. I h:ne
also been concerned about the !act that
certnln labor organtzat.lons take 1t upon
them"'elves to be the arbiters of foreign
policy as to whether or not they wlll load
or unload ~:ommodiUes on ships, in this
spel'lfic lnstnnl'c, wheat.
Because or this factor, we find that
shipments of wheat sold to the Soviet
llnlon were held up for a month or more
nnd becau t' of that the administration
entered Into ncgollntlons v.1th the Soviet
Union In Moscow by means of which
Mlpments Instead of being sent this year
were rdayed over a period of 5 years.
I hnd urged the admini~tratlon on a
number ol occ~lons not to enter into
this kind of a deal because anyone who
knows nnythlnc about the wheat market
would be aware or 1J1e etlect It would
have on prices
'l"hc farmer has been the goat on too
many occasions. has received the blame
Cor too many thtns;s which were not his
fault, and a recognition hus not been accorded
to him based on the amount or
time he puts tn v.orklng to raise a commodity-
wheat. com so~ beans. or whatever
it mar be. The result., as In the case
of the So\ let grain agreement.~ that because
of circumstances beyond hJs control.
condlUons develop which bring
about a depreciation In the price of his
As I ·aid, lOOK before thls deal was underway,
and while the ships were not. beIng
loaded with American wheat wh1ch
had already been sold, I had strongly Indicated
lO the admlnlstrnUon my great
concern nnd pointed out what the situaUon
as developing would mean to the
Amencan tanner and rancher.
Mr. President, v. hat can be done to
wheat. com and SO) beans can be done to
other segments of the n[rl'lcultural economy
as v. ell.
·I am 1n receipt of a letter from Mr.
Richard O'Bdcn of Conrad. Mont.,
whJch I v. ill rend In pnrt. because I think
we ought to be a\\ arc of the efrect of this
agreemer L on the American v.·heat
rancher: spec.lfically,ln this Instance, the
Montana wheat. rancher.
Since thro IUlnounccmc tat the agreement
t.b& price at no-protein winter t1ihcnt at Conrad
has Clropped tully 30 ccnt.ol per bushel At
U1e present Ume, tM e:~Umatcs of Montana's
1976 \\l-.ent erop are abouL 150 mUUon bush·
els. This 30 cent drop then means a 10116 or
-.bout $~5 mUllan to Ule economy of the
Btate I L could \cry welt mean the dllference
bet-l'n 1\ prollto.blc bu !ness year :\nd a lOGS
Yef\1' tor thOHII.'\nda or b••slne smcu In Mon.
ta.na·s rural con\lnunllle
That. is, those who depend upon the
tarm economy fol' a livelihood.
This "R11~111n grnlu dMI'. U>ems to me to
mark a bCg1nnlng of Oo,·ernment dictation
to ~b& fa.rmer u to where nnd how he can sell
hJII prora are una.b ~ to sell thclr ;:>roduct.«
at the blghe:~t price.
He Is referring to the v.hea.t deal
Most people In Lhls oountry teel they
should retain the right to Sall's ofgraf~
131 £ilh point No I "minimum t&le .. to Rill•
ela or 6 million toM a }ear or corn and
"heat combantd ar~ agre~d upon. Th \t'e leu
th!ln 3 ~r Ct'nt of thlo yc.ar·s complete V IJ
corn and whfl!\t production In fact Ru!Sil\
had 1\lrc:\df bOught e 8 million to~ or u..s
ft~aln. In Jul) bt!o,... the 11 ~ clamped on Ulo
ll l.bertt Ia an oil agreement, the quant ty
ln\olv~ will bt 200,000 barret. per day, &e·
c:ordtng to reporta that app. " rell•bln That'l
only 3.3 ~r cent or our current oil Import«
1\nd only 1.3 per cent of our total oil \l•e 1~
fAct, our Import oeedo for oil Rre gro~ln •
each )·car by twlct• th~ nmoutlt the Rm-lllnn~
wm ngree to supply
Ru~• are largely up to thl
l'r~ldent of the Unlt~d States 8\ICh reatrle·
tlons ~an ewly be encore~ . Thu• the 1\'lf~·
:('~~~~ aerve moetly to rc tr!ct grain aaiC'!I
Sal"'- will be n111d~ through Atnerlcan
RrAlll •xporWrt. f\t mJU"k.ot. prlces paid In
CI\Sh That pro,·ldcs two en '/ outs any um~
Russ~" does uot v.l!.s "'1th Russ a on grain
aud oil !Jgreementl are Jwt anothrf mo•e
to pro' Ide exeust"S for restricting t;ro.ln uports
The pul'fiOS bold grain priCIII down to placate
coneum('ra and Mr Mean~ No ml\tt"r If It
fore('~ 118 to ..,II our f.'l'•ln t<> other countrl~•
nt Lh~ lower price, thereby lmp•\lrlnQ the
0 S. ln!A'rnatlonl\1 ball\nOO or paymcntll. No
matter If It ca\1.11011 farmers to produc<' lf"''t
In ruturt \'ears btleauoe they will not be 1\hl<
to bu7 eo many txptn.tve Inputs ourh ""
f~rUII7n peo~t!eldl'$, machlnuy and lrrlgo·
tiOn raelllt\es ·The Important thing I• votn
!or polltlc!ILI\& In the nen electiOn And •••e
COII$Umel'!l ba .. ~ the YQtel,
ln the :ut t.•o mark~Un ac
dtnt Ford hu stopped t I<: AIOM. Pr..,J.
and fHlloWI~~ t2 ~· bushel wl.~at ~ale" to Ru.'13la •• embargo on
U•·Teo& tobeek sfueerd" ' dalrym en, poultrymen and
from the lowt'~"' will benel\t temporarlll'
~houtd be awt>re'~~~ tphrloe 1 &. How~ver, they
In thl • e r turn may co
farm ;rt::"c~tttlso•ernment holding do::!
• ~m~n will not
their expertenctt "'lth prlel' c~Uino!•: 'onn fmoregaett
Wha• abou~ the future? Y.'b
prMtlc:tt or rest~lctlne ~:< at "'Ill th~
Product$ 1n order w hol~o~ts or astlc:ult ural
Anlerlean farmer. and own prices do t<>
only t<> look t~ II ranchero? Wtt ha,·e
ano ... ·er rgentlna ltlne ra:! wll.b producers
can produce mueb en and raurb·
people In the natJon CAn mor. food than the
rears Argentina ,..,. eonaume. Por man,
trAde In wheat eo: 'b major factor IU "'Orld
Then tn the ;940~· eer, and "''001.
political scene. He •d-::~dn f«on carne on .he
polltlc:al power II\ e< that the key to
dustrlal developm!n~n t:OMOrlng rapid ln·
lllrge numbere or tn'chta~~n~n~~~~~-to the
generous wage lncr~n'<~'l and low food prliuo
or this publication. An article there tilted re.
t.l>ll rood prices ror tlx dlllerent !oodll laat
M&reb In tbtt Cl\pltala of 15 natton.s. To retrefh
your mem r), note the listing or the hlllhs
and tows tor ""ch rood compared with W&Ah·
lngton, DC No\C thM 8t1~ftM AlrU WIU the IO~ t fOr
ftve or the six food•. nut It tsn'~ u ntc~ f~ll
with lrTlg&tt.on. Water Ia c-valla.ble and can
btl brought w l.bO land at 1\ 001t l.bat we
would •o<>n&tder low But wlth thO tow tarm
produe• prtce. l.be land cannot bO lrriP~d.
a mu:.r. remain !dlt or at a loW levtl of pro·
Make no mtatue abou~ It--the praeuce
or restricting farm uport.a to hold duv.n
priCe\ Is ,alnlng momentum It wu u.....S
oncl' In the John..on AdmlntatraUon Wldl'
uporu "ere embar"oed then at tbe requeot
of \1.8 lean~ •·ero
a\lddenly atol)~d SOybtan prices dropp...S
~':m more than 810 ~r btu.b~l to ,.,. thl\ll
rr~-=-- ..... ::-
ty;.,._d,.oo t;e;•· tt•p..• .•.•. .=.=. ••
Mr. ~SPIELD· Again. Mr. J>m:\dent.
I want to aay Ulat tn mY opinion
I believe Ule admlnlstrat!on made a m06t
sertous mlatake to the detrlment of the
Iarmer, to the detriment of our a!P'I·
cultural economY. and I belleve ln the
long run to Ule detriment of the people
as a whole.
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