Legislation & Issues

Oklahoma’s farmers and ranchers deserve a Department of Agriculture and a federal farm program that reflects their values of independence, self-reliance, thrift, community, honesty and integrity. Federal farm dollars should directly impact family farms – not expand the bureaucracy. I am committed to bringing increased efficiency and decreased bureaucracy to each area of the U.S. Department of Agriculture and our farm programs.

I have worked hard to promote and protect the values of Oklahoma agriculture in the Senate. I opposed the most recent farm bill, which was hijacked by non-farm interest groups, and now leaves American agricultural producers more vulnerable than before. In the long-term, every aspect of federal spending — including farm policy — can and must come under close review. I will fight to make sure that our farmers are fairly represented in all debates about this vital Oklahoma industry at every opportunity.

Oklahoma agriculture has been hit hard by wildly fluctuating commodity prices, high fuel prices and poor trade negotiations. Volatile natural gas prices and excessive environmental regulations have sent fertilizers costs skyrocketing and low supplies have forced diesel prices even higher. I was a supporter of the Energy Policy Act of 2005, which will encourage further domestic exploration of traditional fuels and boost development of alternative fuels (including agrifuels). We must diversify our energy supplies and lessen our dependence on foreign sources of energy, or this crisis will only worsen.

I will continue to rein in an outdated, inefficient USDA that fails to adequately serve farm country in the 21st Century. With over 100,000 employees and nearly 11,000 in the Washington, DC area, this bureaucracy would rank as the sixth largest company in the United States if it were private.

These efforts include:

• Working to ensure federal farm funds are not siphoned off by non-farmers.
• Keeping America’s commitment to maintain conservation dams and levees throughout Oklahoma.
• Offering alternative emergency funding amendments, fully paid for with reductions in other non-priority federal programs.
• Supporting fair trade agreements that open new markets for Oklahoma crops.
• Leading the fight against federal lands legislation that block access to American energy and drives up productions costs for American agriculture.
• Fighting for the rights of cattle producers to be free from excessive and overbearing federal regulation, including strong opposition to plans by the EPA to regulate livestock emissions.
• Working to ensure that Oklahoma farmers are treated fairly by the federal crop insurance program, and to weed out fraud and abuse in the program.
• Opposing mandatory federal animal identification programs that may threaten the constitutional rights of farmers and ranchers.
• Working with the Government Accountability Office (GAO) to identify inefficient and duplicate nutrition programs authorized under the Farm Bill.

On agricultural trade, we must do a better job of ensuring that our products are treated fairly. For too long, we have sacrificed agricultural products in trade negotiations all in the name of diplomacy. Every nation in the world wants access to the U.S. market — the world’s largest. As a condition of that access, however, any country wanting to export to the United States must grant American producers similar access to their own markets. That is not happening, and must change soon.

It is my belief we must never surrender our sovereignty to the World Trade Organization (WTO) or any other unelected international bureaucracy. The WTO has become a vehicle for other nations to destroy our agricultural trade, and as your senator I will fight any effort by the WTO to dictate American farm policy.

Finally, I am committed to the elimination of the death (estate) tax. It is preventing the next generation of Americans from entering agriculture, and is a serious threat to the sustainability of farming throughout our land.

Our state and nation depends on a stable, efficient domestic farm economy to supply our most basic food needs. As a U.S. senator, I am committed to policies that ensure the long term survival of the American farm.
Dr. Coburn believes the debate on reauthorizing the farm bill should focus on freeing up farmers from the current bureaucracy of federal farm policy. He offered several amendments to the farm bill to accomplish this goal. Click here to read more about Dr. Coburn's amendments to the farm bill.

Dr. Coburn offered an amendment to the 2007 emergency supplemental spending bill to provide emergency farm relief in a fiscally responsible manner.

Floor Action

Press Releases

October 2014
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10/22/14 Wastebook 2014: What Washington doesn't want you to read.
July 2014
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7/29/14 Wealthy Farmers Harvesting Subsidies from Sixty Overlapping Federal Programs
December 2013
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12/12/13 Coburn, Feinstein Introduce Bipartisan Legislation to Eliminate Corn Ethanol Mandate
May 2013
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October 2012
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10/15/12 Coburn Releases Annual Report Highlighting Some of the Most Wasteful Government Spending in 2012
10/9/12 WASTEBOOK 2012
August 2012
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8/2/12 Senates Chooses to Pay for Trade Bill with More Borrowing and Deferred Tax Increases Rather than Eliminating Duplication and Waste
8/1/12 Dr. Coburn Hosting Town Hall Meetings Across Oklahoma
June 2012
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6/21/12 Senate Says “Party’s Over” For Taxpayer Subsidies for Party Conventions and Subsidies for Wealthy Farmers
6/21/12 Senate Votes to Reduce Crop Insurance Subsidies, Save Taxpayer Dollars
6/14/12 Coburn Releases New Report Exposing the Taxpayer Subsidized Market Access Program (MAP)
6/13/12 The Administration's "Campaign to Cut Waste", One Year Later
6/6/12 Coburn Releases New Report on Unspent Federal Dollars
March 2012
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3/29/12 Senators Coburn and Burr Issue Joint Statement on GAO Oversight Report
February 2012
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2/28/12 Sens. Coburn, Collins, & Lieberman Say Annual GAO Report Exposes More Duplication in the Federal Budget, Less Responsibility Coming Out of Washington
2/28/12 Senator Coburn to Testify at House Committee on Oversight and Governmental Reform Hearing Today on Annual GAO Report Addressing Duplication & Overlap in the Federal Government
January 2012
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1/30/12 Dr. Coburn to Host Town Hall Meeting in Edmond on Saturday, February 4th
December 2011
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12/17/11 Dr. Coburn Votes "No" on Omnibus Spending Bill
November 2011
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11/22/11 Dr. Coburn’s Statement on Failure of the Super Committee
October 2011
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10/21/11 Senate Passes Coburn Amendments Ending Welfare for Millionaire Farmers, and Prohibiting Repayment of Federal Grants with Federal Loans, but Protects Greedy Slumlords
10/5/11 Dr. Coburn Launches “Back in Black” Online Survey
September 2011
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9/8/11 Dr. Coburn’s Statement on President Obama’s Jobs Plan
July 2011
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7/25/11 Dr. Coburn’s Statement on Breakdown in Debt Talks
7/18/11 Dr. Coburn Releases $9 Trillion Deficit Reduction Plan
June 2011
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6/22/11 Dr. Coburn Introduces Bill to Restore Constitutional Limitations on Congressional Power
6/16/11 Dr. Coburn’s Statement on Passage of Ethanol Amendment
6/14/11 Dr. Coburn’s Statement on Ethanol Vote
6/10/11 Dr. Coburn’s Statement on Upcoming Ethanol Vote
May 2011
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5/3/11 Senators Coburn, Feinstein, Introduce Bill to Eliminate Ethanol Subsidy and Tariff
December 2007
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12/11/07 Dr. Coburn Votes Against Lugar Amendment
March 2007
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3/30/07 Dr. Coburn Disappointed in Distortions Of Farm Assistance Amendment
December 2006
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12/4/06 Dr. Coburn Comments on Ag Spending Bill
July 2006
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7/27/06 Dr. Coburn Welcomes Resumption of U.S. Beef Imports to Japan
June 2006
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6/21/06 Dr. Coburn Welcomes Progress in Ending Japanese Ban on U.S. Beef Imports
September 2005
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9/21/05 Dr. Coburn Votes to Ban Japanese Beef Imports
March 2005
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3/3/05 Dr. Coburn Votes to Delay Immediate Reopening of U.S. Border to Canadian Beef; Favors Gradual Opening of Border