Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) says things must change between the Ag Committee’s two leaders and the two parties if the new year is to see a new farm bill. Grassley sees more trouble ahead for farm bill efforts next year if the two sides and the Chair and Ranking Member remain dug in on their positions.
Grassley says, “What I’ve observed in the last six months is resistance by Democrats to putting more ‘farm in the farm bill,’ which basically means an increase in reference pricing, and secondly, mostly an issue between Stabenow and Boozman, is this issue of, if you save money in one title, you can’t spend it in another title. And until those things are worked out, and I don’t believe they’ve been worked out, we aren’t going to make any progress in the Senate.”
Grassley joined House conservative Chip Roy of Texas in a letter to House and Senate leaders stressing the need to pass a five-year farm bill. He also wants to include a return of SNAP to its pre-pandemic levels, limiting farm payments to only actively engaged producers, reining in CCC spending discretion, and foreign ownership of U.S. farmland.
Grassley also backs a move by the House to reinstate whole milk removed from the school lunch program in 2012. The Senate has a similar bill. He says, “This whole school lunch program is built around forcing people to eat things that they don’t want and wasting a lot of food. And we ought to let people drink the milk they like.”
Grassley also agrees with a push by Washington State Rep. Dan Newhouse to limit states’ power to regulate pesticide labels beyond EPA’s rules. The Senator argues only the federal government and Congress can regulate interstate commerce.