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McNary-Haugen Bill


McNARY-HAUGEN BILL, a plan to rehabilitate American agriculture by raising the domestic prices of farm products. By the end of 1920 the decline of foreign markets, the effects of the protective tariff, and the burdens of debt and taxation had created a serious agricultural depression. It grew steadily worse in the mid-1920s. The McNary-Haugen plan proposed that farm products for domestic sale be segregated from exports. The former would be sold at the higher domestic price (world price plus the tariff), and the latter at the world price. Farmers of each commodity would meet the difference between the higher domestic price and the world price by levying an "equalization fee" on themselves and distributing the proceeds. The legislation, before Congress from 1924 to 1928, received vigorous support from agricultural interests. In 1927 and in 1928 it passed both houses, only to meet two vetoes by President Calvin Coolidge.


Harstad, Peter T., and Bonnie Lindemann. Gilbert N. Haugen: Norwegian-American Farm Politician. Iowa City: State Historical Society of Iowa, 1992.

Hoffman, Elizabeth, and Gary D. Libecap. "Institutional Choice and the Development of U.S. Agricultural Policies in the 1920s." Journal of Economic History 51 (1991).

Thomas S. Barclay / a. r.

See also Agricultural Price Support ; Agriculture ; Export Debenture Plan ; Wheat .

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