Home » Opinion » Editorials
Shaheen vs. sugar: The senator's good fight
Last Thursday, on Valentine's Day, Shaheen introduced a new version of her bill, written with Sens. Mark Kirk, R-Il, and Pat Toomey, R-Pa., to reduce federal price supports for U.S. sugar producers. In the past, Shaheen has tried to end the price supports entirely. This bill does not go that far, unfortunately, but it probably has a better chance of passing because of that.
The federal government has developed a crazy system of regulations and subsidies that artificially inflate the price of sugar sold in the United States. In the 30 years from 1982 to 2012, the average price of sugar in the USA was more than twice the world price (29.1 cents vs. 14.4 cents per pound), University of Michigan economist Mark Perry noted in an analysis for the American Enterprise institute last week.
Last year alone, the price supports cost U.S. consumers $3 billion.
The protections supposedly save jobs in the sugar industry. But a 2006 U.S. Commerce Department study concluded that "(f)or each one sugar growing and harvesting job saved through high U.S. sugar prices, nearly three confectionery manufacturing jobs are lost."
That is, to protect a handful of major sugar producers, the government hurts candy makers like Lindt in Stratham, as well as every U.S. consumer who buys anything containing sugar.
Shaheen has taken the lead in the Senate in fighting these subsidies.
Though she continues to support other wasteful subsidy programs, such as those for "green energy," she deserves credit for coming to the aid of Lindt and American consumers by going after the unjustifiable sugar price supports.
READER COMMENTS: 0
- Wheeler in Dist. 5: A GOP fighter for the little guy - 2
- GOP for legal pot? Hemignway's high help - 12
- Obama's indecision: In NH, only Ayotte urges action - 43
- Concealed controversy: Our 'Mother, may I' gun policy - 37
- Innis in the 1st: A strong choice for Congress - 10
- Obama waits: A terror threat grows - 41
- For U.S. Senate, Scott Brown best NH candidate come November - 71
- Race and policing: America has a problem - 0
- Strength in faith: Gaining it from Jim Foley's family - 0
READER COMMENTS: 0
- NHIAA Boys' Soccer Preview: Talent to boot - 0
- Drew Cline: Small sleights of hand in Republican primaries around NH - 0
- Where is Shaheen? Hiding from you - 0
- Scott and Genevieve Kelley - 0
- Market Basket deal reached; Arthur T. Demoulas to return - 1
- Police mum on reported shooting in Manchester - 0
- Manchester men charged with drive-by shooting in Nashua - 0
- Multiple reports say deal reached for Arthur T. to buy Market Basket - 0
- Fisher Cats get behind early, fall to Senators - 0
Reports: Market Basket doomsday plan would shutter 61 of 71 stores if deal not struck soon
GOP for legal pot? Hemignway's high help
Ohio's Rob Portman: GOP can win back Senate