The Farm Bureau Federation, despite their recent failure to pass the 2012 Farm Bill, is preparing for a new congressional fight as the House and Senate both consider a new, five-year farm bill.
Last summer, Congress came tantalizingly close to passing a new farm bill. The Senate passed a version of the farm bill (on that based most of its savings on the elimination of farm subsidies) and the House Agriculture Committee approved a draft of a farm bill (one that reduced farm spending by cutting nutritional spending), but the full House refused to hold a floor vote, allowing the bill to die in committee.
Despite throwing almost the entirety of their political clout into the farm bill (including holding a series of public protests as well as a series of lobbying efforts), the bill failed to pass, a testament to the declining influence of farmers on the political process.
This failure, however, has not dissuaded farmers from continuing their crusade to push for a new farm bill, and are hoping to ratchet up the pressure on Congress. “Last year, Congress merely extended the old 2008 farm bill until Sept. 30 of this year. Now, while unfortunately we have less money to work with, it is vital that Congress complete a new five-year farm bill this year. Doing so is in the economic interest of our entire nation,” said the group’s president.
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Written by: Justin Ellison / Farm Plus Staff Writer