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Iowa pig farmer looks to Sanders to save farming

Credit: Reuters Studio
Published on February 1, 2020 - Duration: 02:27s

Iowa pig farmer looks to Sanders to save farming

Iowan Chris Petersen may be surrounded by a sea of red but he plans to vote blue on Monday, believing Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders is the best hope to save family farms like his.

Conway G.

Gittens reports.

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Iowa pig farmer looks to Sanders to save farming

For third-generation family farmer Chris Petersen there is no doubt who is getting his vote on Monday when he and fellow Iowans take part in the caucuses to help decide who should be the Democratic Party's presidential nominee.

(SOUNDBITE) (English) CHRIS PETERSEN, HOG FARMER, SAYING: "I'm a Sanders guy.

He has the best rural policy, the best 'ag' policy.

He has the best healthcare policy.

I just believe in the Green New Deal.

I believe it's the best deal since the New Deal to re-establish family farm agriculture as we want it." Petersen isn't alone.

Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders is statistically in a tie at the top with Former Vice President Joe Biden with likely caucus goers according to a Monmouth University poll released earlier this week.

But for Petersen, Sanders gets the edge because he is more in touch with the issues of the day.

(SOUNDBITE) (English) CHRIS PETERSEN, HOG FARMER, SAYING: "Prime example, the debate when he said, about healthcare, one of the comments was he said, 'Hey I wrote the damn bill, you know, I know what's in it.'

So I think the guy would be good for this country and start a change of direction here to put the country back together, so to speak." Petersen isn't afraid to get his hands dirty on the farm or in the political process.

He sits on the board of the Iowa Farmers' Union, is politically active, and even introduced Sanders at a recent rally.

It doesn't matter to him that Trump won the state in 2016 and still seems to get high grades with many neighbors, Petersen believes Trump and Republicans are not doing enough for the country.

(SOUNDBITE) (English) CHRIS PETERSEN, HOG FARMER, SAYING: "The family farm is struggling.

The family farm is getting pushed off the land.

Big agribusiness, big corporations are taking over.

Rural America has massive problems with de-population, pollution...I guess the reason I do all this and stand with family farmers and consumers is, I care...and trying to make it a better world, trying to raise food, safe food and sustainability, take care of the planet and everything else." And he's taking all that emotion with him when he goes to vote for Sanders this Monday.

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