Billion-Dollar Squeeze

The public was only given to understand that somehow the regular Department of Agriculture appropriation had got hung up in Congress, but something far bigger than that was going on. At stake was the success of the nation's entire wartime food program, not to mention the possibility of entirely unnecessary and artificial inflation of food prices. At stake for a relatively few top-drawer U.S. farmers were several hundred million dollars of velvet.

Four men had accomplished a gigantic legislative squeeze. Lobbyists Earl Smith of Illinois and Ed O'Neal of Alabama and Congressmen Clarence Cannon of Missouri and Everett Dirksen of...

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