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Ag News Roundup: Trump’s Cabinet & Tax Plan, Immigration, Vegans

Tump's cabinet, tax planForbes: Trump Tax Plan Could Impact 2016 Year-End Planning: “Donald Trump’s surprise victory first rattled markets, then invigorated them. It triggered protests, and in some circles, is even fueling a “CalExit” movement for California to break away from the union. But, it could invite some tax planning, too. Candidate Trump made no secret of his view that our tax system needs reform. He even sounded briefly Warren Buffet-like. He blamed the tax laws for making it possible for him to manipulate the tax law to pay so little via his controversial $916 million net operating loss!

With Republicans retaining control over the House and Senate, some tax cuts are inevitable. With this quite extraordinary confluence of events, President-elect Trump and Congress might tell the tax code, “you’re fired!” This could suggest that deferring income into next year if you can might be wise. Next year, the rates should be lower. Under current law, we pay tax on ordinary income tax at graduated rates stretching from 10 percent to 39.6 percent.

But since Obamacare, high-income taxpayers pay an additional 3.8% surtax on net investment income. That means the top federal rate for individuals is really 43.4%. Qualified dividends and long-term capital gains are taxed at 15% or 20%, depending on your income. Yet, that rate too gets hit with the additional 3.8 % for Obamacare’s net investment income tax. Here are 5 key things about the Trump tax plan: Continue reading to get the details.

Pew Research Center: 5 facts about illegal immigration in the U.S.: “The U.S. civilian workforce included 8 million unauthorized immigrants in 2014, accounting for 5% of those who were working or were unemployed and looking for work, according to new Pew Research Center estimates. The number was unchanged from 2009 and down slightly from 8.2 million in 2007. The share of unauthorized immigrants in the civilian labor force was down slightly from 2009 (5.2%) and 2007 (5.4%). Compared with their 5% share of the civilian workforce overall, unauthorized immigrants are overrepresented in farming occupations (26%) and construction occupations (15%). In all industries and occupations, though, they are outnumbered by U.S.-born workers.”

Politico:Revenge of the rural voter:Rural voters turned out in a big way this presidential cycle — and they voted overwhelmingly for Donald Trump. “It was supposed to be the year of the Latino voter. Unfortunately for Hillary Clinton, white rural voters had an even bigger moment.

Now Democrats are second-guessing the campaign’s decision to largely surrender the rural vote to the GOP. With their eyes turned anxiously toward 2018, they’re urging a new strategy to reach out to rural voters to stave off another bloodbath when a slew of farm-state Democrats face tough reelection battles.
“Hillary lost rural America 3 to 1,” said one Democratic insider, granted anonymity to speak candidly about the campaign. “If she had lost rural America 2 to 1, it would have broken differently.”

New York Times: Donald Trump is Picking His Cabinet, Here’s The Short List. Read it here.

Quartz: How the vegan movement broke out of its echo chamber and finally started disrupting things: “The American vegan movement was always its own worst enemy.
Members of the movement made their first impressions bellowing into bullhorns, desperate to make a difference by willing it with a loud enough voice.
But actual engagement was a weakness as people tended to ignore the passionate subculture with a rigid gospel prohibiting use of any and all animal products. For the most part, the only marks left by their efforts throughout the 1970s, 80s, and 90s were those scuffed into their shoes as police officers dragged them off the streets.

And then, with little warning, something changed.
A small clan of seven people—most of them in Washington, DC—considered a different tactic. In doing so, they cleaved the vegan movement in two, sowing bitter resentment but also a bold path forward. A 2001 schism splintered the vegan community into two camps: absolutists who tout veganism as an all-or-nothing moral imperative, and pragmatists who quietly advocate for incremental change. The vegan movement’s brain finally outgrew its heart, and in less than two decades the pragmatic vein of the movement has morphed into one of the biggest disruptors of the American food system.
At the core of the pragmatic effort is the Humane Society of the United States, which has managed to consolidate enough political power to leave its fingerprints on public and corporate policy changes across the federal, state, and local levels.” Continue reading.

Have a great week,

Melissa Beck

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