The Role of Government in Rural America

A Survey Asks Rural Residents about the Role of Government in Rural America

What do the people living in rural America think the role of government should be in their communities? A survey conducted for the Nebraska-based Center for Rural Affairs found that rural residents believe they are ignored relative to urban voters; they also expressed distrust of their government in certain instances. Respondents also noted support for certain government programs. According to Bill Wheelhouse, reporting on the study for Harvest Public Media: “The point of the survey was not just to get a state of the mood of rural residents, it was designed for those who work in rural advocacy groups to help them engage rural residents to spur policy change – a sort of public policy playbook for those with a vested interest in rural life.” The study, conducted by by Lake Research Partners and the Tarrance Group on behalf of the Center for Rural affairs, surveyed 800 voters in rural areas and small towns in the Midwest, the Great Plains and the southeastern United States. You can find additional information about the results of the survey here. Are you a beginning farmer living in one of the regions in which people were surveyed? What are your thoughts about the role of government in your community? What do you think about the survey conducted by the Center for Rural Affairs?

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