Inside Report (3)
Ronald Reagan may notch a dramatic victory down on the farm -- ifm he holds the line on cutting farm programs despite mounting opposition in Congress. Support for farm-support programs is growing almost as rapidly as Midwestern corn and soybeans. The record wheat harvest and bumper feed-grain crops point to oversupply and therefore low prices. But low prices will be hard on farmers still saddled with last year's debts and now facing 17 percent interest rates on new borrowing. That's why farm groups are lobbying heavily for revived set-aside programs (which pay farmers not to plant).
Whether such costly programs resurface depends on Reagan's toughness under fire -- unless he's "rescued" from bumper crops by an early frost that cuts yields.m