Calling November's election "the most important in a generation to farmers and the families of rural America," leading farm advocate Dean Kleckner, Truth About Trade chairman, has announced a grassroots voter education and mobilization effort designed to counter the campaigns being waged by "violent projectionists and environmental extremists."

"It is now conventional wisdom that the voters in states like Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Missouri, Iowa and Illinois will determine the outcome of the fall elections. But so far, only one idea has been heard in the debate for America's heartland. A small, but very loud and sometimes violent crowd of anti-trade radicals and environmental extremists is drowning out the voices of the farmers and families of rural America who will decide campaign 2000," warned Kleckner.

"Farmers and the families of rural America have a tremendous opportunity," declared Kleckner. "Over the course of the next eight weeks, the campaigns will be crisscrossing farm country looking for every last vote. This is our chance to put the issues most critical to the future prosperity of rural America in the political spotlight."

Kleckner announced that Truth About Trade, a non-partisan pro-trade group, will be conducting an issue advocacy project called Farm Vote 2000. It will feature a voter guide, rural advertising and Kleckner traveling to politically important farm states to urge farmers to confront the candidates on the issues.

In conjunction with Kleckner's announcement, Truth About Trade has released the Farm Vote 2000 voter guide highlighting issues key to the future of rural America, including: trade with China, opposing the Kyoto Accords, ending unilateral trade sanctions and supporting biotechnology.

"On a whole slate of issues, the choices are clear. Will the farm economy be revitalized by expanded trade or stifled by fear and protectionism? Will sound science or scare tactics prevail in the debate to protect the environment?" asked Kleckner. "These are the questions we need to put to the candidates. Their answers will determine the fate of the farmer and the families of rural America."

Mary Boote, executive director of Truth About Trade, announced that two longtime Mid western politicos, Brian Kennedy and Bob Haus, are managing Farm Vote 2000.

Based in Des Moines, IA, Truth About Trade is a national grassroots organization of farmers and leaders in communities, trade associations and corporations dedicated to promoting the benefits of free trade and biotechnology advancement. Active in 34 states, Truth About Trade promotes economic facts, sound science and accurate research relating to global trade and biotechnology.

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