How Farmers Harvest U.S. Taxpayer Dollars

By David Ellis - 2013-09-09T14:38:32Z

Photograph by Luke Frazza/AFP via Getty Images 

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Clinton's Lack of Limits

In 1994, Congress passed a law signed by President Bill Clinton that required farmers to take coverage against crop failure, with taxpayers footing 100 percent of the premium cost. Payouts were triggered when 50 percent of the anticipated yield failed. By 1998, about two-thirds of total planted acreage of field crops in the U.S. were covered under the program, according to the USDA.

Clinton toured a wheat farm in Broadview, Montana, the year he signed the expansion of the program.

Special Report: Doomed Crops, Record Profits