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House Ag Democrats Press For Farm Bill, Key Principles

House Ag Democrats are stepping up public pressure to get a farm bill done soon, based on key Democratic principles.

Ag Democrats blame GOP “discord and disorder” for delaying a farm bill again this year, as other legislative disputes and the election year calendar start to close off farm bill prospects. But each side continues to hold fast to long-held bargaining positions—Democrats in a new ‘principles memo,’ say they’ll protect SNAP and climate investments. Republicans continue to argue SNAP and climate savings are needed to boost farm programs.

Top House Democrat Hakeem Jeffries argued earlier, the farm bill should be “fertile ground” for coming together, but added, “The only problem that we confront now, is that the extreme MAGA Republicans want to hijack the farm bill, and take it in a certain direction, inconsistent with meeting the needs of farmers and the American people. And we will oppose that, every step of the way.”

But Ag Chair GT Thompson argued in December, writing the next farm bill will take “significant investment” by repurposing Inflation Reduction Act funds and reforming SNAP. He says, “These ideas have been applauded and demonized, but I will not relent, and I will not fail our rural communities, many of whom have suffered insurmountable loss due to variables beyond their control.”

Thompson called his approach “strategic” arguing it would fine tune the farm safety net and increase the farm bill funding baseline.

In the Senate, Ag Chair Debbie Stabenow proposed shifting ARC and PLC funds to more time-sensitive crop insurance payments, an idea that has yet to gain traction among Ag Republicans.

Story courtesy of the NAFB News Service

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