Chief Senate sponsor of cattle market reform legislation Chuck Grassley remains positive his controversial bill will get floor time, despite COVID sidelining Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer.
Schumer’s illness could compress the time remaining in the Senate before the August recess to take up controversial legislation. And Grassley’s Cattle Price Discovery and Transparency Act has divided cattlemen despite strong bipartisan support among lawmakers.
But Grassley remains hopeful Schumer will be back in the saddle soon and allow Grassley’s bill on the floor—at least before the November elections.
“I’m sure that a lot of people running in these farm states need this legislation. And I’m sure that Senator Stabenow is going to want to do it, she’s had a good run as chairman of the committee.” That comment was in reference to the Senate Agriculture Committee. Grassley went on to say, “Maybe she’ll be chairman next year, but there’s a chance Republicans can take over the United States Senate, and I’m sure she’d want to get as many accomplishments as she can, while she’s still chairman.”
The House earlier passed a package of livestock competition bills, but centered on a bill to create a USDA meat and poultry special investigator, also pending in the Senate.
Politically, any push to reduce or show they’re fighting inflation is important to Democrats, facing headwinds in November.
Grassley sees his bill helping independent producers get a better cattle price and more competition with the big four packers reducing meat prices at the supermarket.