President Obama visits California's drought region

FRESNO, Calif. (AP) - President Barack Obama will visit California's drought-stricken agricultural heartland Friday to meet with community leaders, farmers and others and to announce initiatives to assist the Central Valley. Obama is scheduled to meet with a round table of farmers, a group that has accused the federal government of putting rivers and fish above their crops and livelihoods.

The Central Valley produces nearly one-third of the nation's fruits and vegetables, and Fresno County leads the nation in agriculture. But 25 percent of the county's farmland may go unplanted because of the drought.

Dry conditions have caused Democrats and Republicans in Congress to propose dueling emergency bills.

Members of least one environmental group plan to converge on Fresno for the president's visit to voice their positions on California's divisive struggles over water.


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