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Republican Senate Candidate Jason Lewis’ Previously Unreported Comments Show He Would Let Minnesota Farms Fail


Lewis: “The Government Shouldn’t Have Anything to do With Farming”

Republican U.S. Senate candidate for Minnesota, Jason Lewis, repeatedly puts his own rigid ideology ahead of Minnesotans. Newly-released reporting by the Star Tribune reveals a series of demeaning comments Lewis made about the farming community and their importance to Minnesota and our nation.

In video footage reported on by the Star Tribune, Lewis claimed that America “glamorized” farming, opposed farm safety nets, and said the government “shouldn’t have anything to do with farming.” Lewis made these comments while a co-host on a public affairs television show called Face-to-Face. 

On Sunday, the Star Tribune referenced old TV footage of Lewis questioning government crop subsidies and declaring, ‘Government shouldn’t have anything to do with farming.’”

The Star Tribune continued: “‘We have glamorized a certain industry, as valuable as it is,’ Lewis, a Republican, said on a TV program in 1998. ‘And members of Congress are running on ‘not one more farm ever going under,’ which I think is a little bit naive.’”

In addition to Lewis’ comments reported in the Star Tribune, Lewis can be seen in this video,  this video, and this video demeaning farmers by:

  • Saying he wanted the farms “that are most efficient to be profitable and stay in farming, [but] I don’t wanna say the numbers of farms in America in 1996 ought to remain that way through the next millennium.”
  • Comparing farms to hardware stores by asking “aren’t those the normal vicissitudes of everyday business life? Would we say to a hardware store owner that has a good year and then a bad year, ‘Oh, we’re gonna insulate you from the bad years?’ We wouldn’t say that, would we?’”
  • And finally, saying that “sooner or later, agriculture is going to have to realize they’re their own worst enemy.”

As Congress looks to the next Farm Bill, it’s worth noting that as a one-term Congressman, Lewis was the only member of the Minnesota Congressional delegation–Republican or Democrat–to vote against the bipartisan, final Farm Bill that included efforts to expand broadband access, conservation, agricultural research, support the federal sugar program, and to expand support for veteran, minority and beginning farmers.