Farm Bill - What's Next?

Farm Bill - What's Next?
Created by rrummel on 9/3/2013 3:56:27 PM

Mixed Signals from House

It appears reports suggesting top House leadership had settled on a strategy for moving forward on the next farm bill are incorrect. With the current farm bill set to expire September 30th - aides to House Republican leaders say how to proceed is still under consideration. The House approved a farm program-only farm bill before the August recess and is expected to work on a separate nutrition title once members return to Washington. During a stop in North Dakota last week - House Majority Leader Eric Cantor said legislation dealing with food stamps will reflect the reform agenda of Republicans. It was reported after that visit that Cantor said the House would pass the food stamp portion of the legislation this month (September) and that House GOP leaders would then appoint conferees to negotiate a final version of the farm bill with the Senate. But Cantor aides say the leader’s plans were mischaracterized. Spokesman Rory Cooper says the leader expects to take up a nutrition bill that makes much-needed reforms to the food stamp program that adds work requirements for able-bodied adults, ends abuses and protects it for the children, seniors, disabled and families that most need it. He says next steps would be considered once the House gets to that point. That seems to conflict with North Dakota Republican Kevin Cramer’s view of the road forward. The Washington Post reports Cramer suggested in an interview last week that House Speaker John Boehner would appoint conferees to negotiate with the Senate whether the nutrition piece is passed or not. The House returns from the August recess on September 9th.

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