A likely farm bill extension should be easy to pass despite the political turmoil on Capitol Hill, now complicated by war in the Middle East. That, according to a senior Ag lawmaker.
Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) was asked about House Ag Chair GT Thompson’s recent doubts in a Roll Call story over passing a farm bill extension through a “distracted and divided” House. But Grassley doesn’t see it as a problem; “I can’t think of a single piece of legislation that needs reauthorization, that hasn’t been extended for at least one year, through the appropriations process. I expect it to be pretty easy to get a one-year extension.”
The 2018 farm bill expired September 30, and without a new one or an extension, unrealistic 1940’s supply management policies and higher farm subsidies will start on January first. Grassley says farm bill talks seem deadlocked; “There’s talks going on, but not much progress being made, and that’s not based upon my talking to Boozman and Stabenow, but what I’ve heard from other members that are co-members of the committee with me.”
And once the House elects a new Speaker, lawmakers in both chambers will face the challenge of passing spending bills for the fiscal year now underway, including ag defeated once in the House.