Super Committee announces failure, others disappointment


A farm-bill proposal crafted by House and Senate Agriculture leaders effectively moved into legislative limbo Monday as the super committee announced it had failed to reach an agreement to cut federal spending.

Committee co-chairs of the deficit reduction super committee waited until the markets closed yesterday to announce that they came to the conclusion that it will not be possible to make any bipartisan agreement before their deadline on Wednesday.

Many legislators, people and groups expressed their disappointment at the announcement.

Following the announcement, National Corn Growers association President Gary Niemeyer said that NCGA “appreciates the hard work of the chairs and ranking members of the House and Senate Ag Committees to meet agriculture’s responsibility to help address our debt crisis.”

He said, “NCGA will continue to advocate for market-based risk management farm programs that recognize our nation’s difficult financial situation. As the farm bill process moves into next year, we look forward to working with the House and Senate Agriculture Committees to address the critical challenges facing America’s corn farmers.”

Representative Kristi Noem issued the following statement after the news:

“The lack of agreement is very disappointing. The Joint Committee was specifically designed to help break gridlock, but it seems that compromise has once again taken a back seat to partisanship. I believe Republicans were willing to meet halfway by offering a proposal that would have cut spending and provided additional revenue through pro-growth tax reform. Neither party can reduce our deficit alone. We must find a way to work together to tackle our debt problem before it’s too late.”

And Senator John Hoeven, in response to the announcement, said:

“The Joint Select Committee’s announcement today that it was unable to reach agreement on a deficit reduction plan does not alter the fact that our nation continues to face serious financial challenges. That is a view shared by both Republicans and Democrats in the U.S. Senate, and must form the path to our way forward.

“The reality is that Congress must work together in a bipartisan way to reduce our deficit and debt, put our nation on a sound financial footing, help to restore our economy and create jobs for the American people.”

The joint committee’s failure effectively scraps a farm-bill proposal that had been negotiated behind closed doors since September. That plan would have trimmed about $23 billion from farm programs.

Based on earlier estimates from members of Congress, if lawmakers move into the next phase of across-the-board budget cuts, USDA programs could see $14-$16 billion in cuts.

House Agriculture Committee Chair Frank Lucas and Senate Chair Debbie Stabenow released a joint statement saying that they will continue to move ahead on reauthorizing a farm bill in 2012.