Americans expect straight talk from their government. If our government says something, you ought to be able to take it to the bank, as the saying goes.

The En­­vironmental Protection Agency (EPA) is not meeting that expectation. Instead of making things clear when it comes to how the proposed waters of the U.S. rule would affect farmers and other landowners, the EPA is muddying the waters.

It’s complicated

Two Supreme Court rulings have limited the EPA’s and the Corps of Engineers’ authority under the Clean Water Act to waters that are navigable or have a significant nexus to navigable waters. EPA claims...