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Trump scuttles ethanol policy deal, senators say

Trump scuttles ethanol policy deal, senators say
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President TrumpDonald TrumpEx-DOJ official Rosenstein says he was not aware of subpoena targeting Democrats: report Ex-Biden adviser says Birx told him she hoped election turned out 'a certain way' Cheney rips Arizona election audit: 'It is an effort to subvert democracy' MORE has stopped an expected deal to change how the federal government enforces the federal ethanol mandate.

Iowa GOP Sens. Chuck GrassleyChuck GrassleyHouse unveils antitrust package to rein in tech giants Iowa governor questions lack of notice on migrant children flights to Des Moines Senate crafts Pelosi alternative on drug prices MORE and Joni ErnstJoni Kay ErnstOvernight Defense: Pentagon details military construction projects getting .2B restored from wall funds | Biden chooses former commander to lead Navy | Bill seeks to boost visa program for Afghans who helped US Meghan McCain: Harris 'sounded like a moron' discussing immigration Senate bill would add visas, remove hurdles to program for Afghans who helped US MORE both tweeted the news late Tuesday, and a source familiar with the matter confirmed it.

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The White House was expected this week to unveil a deal that would have, among other measures, counted exported ethanol toward the annual volume mandates under the Renewable Fuel Standard, effectively decreasing the amount of ethanol that must be blended into the nation’s gasoline.

Trump “helped farmers by rejecting bad ethanol deal. I appreciate. GREAT NEWS,” Grassley tweeted.

Ernst tweeted that Trump “just assured me he 'won’t sign a deal that’s bad for farmers!' Thank you, Mr. President!”

Iowa dominates the country's corn production, the feedstock that produces most of the country’s ethanol.

The Trump administration deal would have also removed restrictions on selling gasoline with high ethanol concentrations in the summer, a move supported by ethanol backers.

Grassley and Ernst had spent Tuesday chastising Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott PruittEdward (Scott) Scott PruittOklahoma AG resigns following news of divorce, alleged affair Court sets in motion EPA ban on pesticide linked to developmental issues Scientific integrity, or more hot air? MORE — whose agency is responsible for the ethanol mandate — over the expected agreement.

Ernst said at an event that Pruitt “is about as swampy as you get here in Washington, D.C. … and if the president wants to drain the swamp, he needs to take a look at his own Cabinet.”

She was referring specifically to Pruitt's spending and ethics scandals, but her main anger at Pruitt was over ethanol.

“This is a case where the president is being ill-served by political appointees that aren't carrying out his agenda,” said Grassley.