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Is there any particular meaning to having an office dedicated to rural affairs in the White House? We at the Yonder don’t know, but it has become something of an issue ever since President Obama opened a White House office for the cities. So Tuesday, 41 members of the Congressional Rural Caucus co-signed a letter to the President asking that he create a White House Office of Rural Policy.
“The administration chose to set up an office of urban policy,” said Rep. Travis Childers of Mississippi, caucus co-chair. “So we specifically felt like, based on that, we should ask for equal treatment for rural America.” Among those signing the letter were Reps. Bobby Bright, D-Ala.; Robert Aderholt, R-Ala.; Rep. Artur Davis, D-Ala.; Rep. Sanford Bishop, D-Ga.; and Rep. Tom Perriello, D-Va.
The White House said the president was “committed to addressing the needs of rural Americans….” Chuck Hassebrook, with the Center for Rural Affairs (and, for a bit, a candidate for the Deputy Secretary slot in the Department of Agriculture) said the idea for a rural office was a good one. “There are many unique rural aspects to critical issues we’re dealing with today,” he told reporter Amy Dominello.