How Obama Could Affect West Texas Agriculture

By Wyatt Goolsby
NewsWest 9

West Texas farmers and ranchers struggling to make ends meet. They're worried what the future holds with a new President in office.

"We are very concerned," Armando Mandujano, a Coyanosa farmer and rancher, explained.

Mandujano said he is like a lot of West Texas farmers and ranchers looking for support in tough economic times. He's worried how President Obama will affect agriculture.

"There's a lot of stuff that could change," Mandujano explained. "Right now, we don't know what exactly is going to happen with the Farm Bill. We need our Congressmen to support us, so we can stay in business."

Mandujano said rising production expenses in the last decade has made it tough to grow crops.

Colin Woodall says that's not the only worry for agriculture in West Texas.

Woodall, a lobbyist for the National Cattlemen's Beef Association, told West Texas ranchers this month about the numerous challenges they face in Washington.

"Only 1.1 percent of the members of Congress are actually farmers or ranchers," Woodall said. "That means that we have almost five hundred and thirty other members who don't know the first thing about agriculture."

Woodall told NewsWest 9 a lack of education is to blame for proposals to tax cows for passing gas and even a proposed tax for kicking up dust. Neither of those President Obama proposed. 
However, even if President Obama doesn't come from an agricutlural background, at least one local rancher is optimistic.

"We've got him, we're going to have to use him the best we can, and see if we can educate him a little bit," West Texas Rancher, Minnie Lou Bradley, said.