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HomeAg NewsAppropriations, Farm Bill Process in Limbo Amid Speakership Void, New Shutdown Deadline

Appropriations, Farm Bill Process in Limbo Amid Speakership Void, New Shutdown Deadline

The Congress is paralyzed amid a House Speakership void and a looming new shutdown cliff next month, preventing action on spending and policy bills like the farm bill. The House can do little if any legislative work until it elects a new Speaker, while the Senate struggles to advance its own spending bills amid a shutdown threat looming again next month…

Senate GOP Whip John Thune (R-SD) said, “We have until November the 17th. I regret the fact that we’re not going to be here next week. I think the Senate ought to be here next week working on the appropriations bills because we have a short amount of time and a lot of work to get done.”

The House passed four spending bills but killed its USDA-FDA bill over farm program cuts and limits on a mail-order abortion drug. The Senate passed no spending bills–Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer of New York said “We’re working very hard in the Senate to get things done. We have passed 12 bills out of committee – bipartisan appropriations bills – and now we are working to get those bipartisan bills to the floor of the Senate.”

But that won’t matter until a new House Speaker’s picked and bills move again there to avert a shutdown. Senate GOP Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky said “Well, I think the obvious answer is, we need to get a Speaker, and hopefully, we’ll get one by next week. And I’ll repeat what I said earlier which is, I think to do that job, you have to get rid of the ‘motion to vacate.’”

That allows a single House member to try to oust the Speaker, putting that person, McConnell says, in a “hammerlock.” House Ag Chair Glenn GT Thompson meantime told the Roll Call paper that McCarthy’s historic ouster may have “blown up any meaningful legislation” like the farm bill, and he’s even unsure an extension can make it through a “distracted and divided House.”

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