A new report from the Congressional Research Service considers: “What would happen in 2016 if a candidate for President or Vice President were to die or leave the ticket any time between the national party conventions and the November 8 election day? What would happen if this occurred during presidential transition, either between election day and the December 19, 2016, meeting of the electoral college; or between December 19 and the inauguration of the President and Vice President on January 20, 2017?”
It was a pleasant surprise to read in the Food section of the Washington Post last week that a new breed of perennial wheat called Kernza has now become commercially available. (“Perennial wheat is an ecologist’s dream. Soon it may be what’s for dinner” by Jane Black, October 2).
Perennial food grains have been pursued for decades by researchers at The Land Institute in Salina, Kansas because, unlike crops that must be annually resown, perennial grains can help to strengthen soil over time rather than depleting it.
But this kind of research into sustainable agriculture is not on the research agenda of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
According to the Congressional Research Service, some critics “have argued that some of USDA’s agricultural research portfolio duplicates private sector activities on major crops, including corn, soybeans, wheat, and cotton. They argue that funding should be reallocated to basic, noncommercial research to benefit the public good that is not addressed through private efforts.” See Agricultural Research: Background and Issues, October 6, 2016.
Other new and updated reports from the Congressional Research Service include the following.
Presidential Transition Act: Provisions and Funding, updated October 5, 2016
Paris Climate Change Agreement to Enter into Force November 4, CRS Insight, October 5, 2016
Should the U.S. Relinquish Its Authority Over the Internet Domain Name System?, CRS Insight, October 5, 2016
Medicare: Insolvency Projections, updated October 5, 2016
State, Foreign Operations and Related Programs: FY2017 Budget and Appropriations, updated October 5, 2016
U.S. Invokes Visa Sanctions under Section 243(d) of the INA for the First Time in 15 Years, CRS Legal Sidebar, October 5, 2016