By Julie Murphree, Arizona Farm Bureau Communication, Ag Education and Marketing Director: The Presidential Election of 2016 will be marked as one of the more unpredictable and wildly vitriolic elections of our time. This is the one prediction I’m confident of being accurate about.

Our farmers always look to the future ... (Photo of Cochise County Chili farmer Ed Curry)

Fortune Magazine discussed well how the Democratic Party is “antagonistic toward business” and over the last eight years driven a “strangling entanglement of new regulations.” On the other hand, Donald Trump “has built his campaign on an attack on the very principles of globalization that fueled post-World War II prosperity” in addition to fueling “conspiracy theories.”

And now president-elect Donald Trump, after last night's surprising upset, leads a super majority in Congress as both the Senate and House are controlled by the Republicans. Don't forget, Obama had this special set up after his first election too.

Our future has never been clear regardless of who is in office; our hope in it though can be. But politicians were never really the ones that could fully fix our problemns and make things better (though they can help mess things up). It’s always been the American people, united and hopeful about the future that really move our great country forward.

Business, community and farm and ranch leaders move our tomorrows. So, I reached out to a handful of our leaders and ask them about the “day after” on their farm or ranch. Here’s what a few of them said.

Hope and Reality Living on the Farm and Ranch

  • “The elections don’t bother us much.  We scoop poop everyday anyway. Plus, on the ranch, we have to know the difference between fly specs and pepper. The same talent helps us evaluate politicians.” --Glenn Hickman, President and CEO of Hickman’s Family Farms
  • "Farmers and ranchers have always embraced working with our elected officials on either side of the aisle! Whether you are Republican, Democrat or Independent we all have to eat and wear clothes. Now is the time to work together to ensure the health and integrity of our industry -- the backbone of America." -- Sherry Saylor, partnered with her husband in R&S Farms and American Farm Bureau Women's Leadership Chair. Saylor also serves as chair of Arizona Farm Bureau's AgPAC.
  • “Elections and politicians come and go, farmers farm, and people eat. God is good!” --Steve Sossaman, Sossaman Farms
  • “Regardless of the cow, a true cowboy will undoubtedly eventually get her corralled. The difference cow-to-cow is how much blood, sweat, and tears it takes to get her in the pen. Kids and politics are much the same.”--Lance Knight, Apache County Farm Bureau President and rancher owner/operator of the Diamond K Angus Ranch in Northeastern Arizona
  • “I would just comment that it is a responsibility to be informed and a privilege to vote; a privilege denied to many in other countries.”--Vickie Parks, Arizona Farm Bureau’s Women’s Leadership Committee member

We truly do live in a great country. For more than 200 years Americans have observed the peaceful transition of 43 different presidents from competing parties, ideologies and leadership styles. That alone makes us exceptional.

Finally, one of my ranch families reminded us about the Twelve Great Reasons to Love a Great Country, by William J. Bennett and John T.E. Cribb. Thanks Vickie Parks for the list reminder below:

  1. The United States was the first nation in history created out of the belief that people should govern themselves.
  2. America really is the land of the free.
  3. No other country has done a better job of establishing equal rights for all citizens.
  4. This is the place where dreams can come true.
  5. We enjoy one of the world’s highest standards of living.
  6. No other country has welcomed and united so many people from so many different shores.
  7. The U. S. Military is the greatest defender of freedom in the world.
  8. America is a world leader in scholarship and invention.
  9. Americans are among the most generous people on earth.
  10. The United States is the world’s greatest marketplace for the free exchange of ideas and information.
  11. This nation possesses an amazing capacity for self-renewal.
  12. America is a nation that looks to God for guidance.

 God bless America!

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