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Time Running Out for New Farm Bill

There may be a small window left this year to do a farm bill, according to the American Farm Bureau Federation, but time is running out to find that legislative window.

“It’s a challenge for sure, without a doubt,” says Ryan Yates, AFBF Managing Director of Government Affairs. “This spring would be ideal. I mean, we’ve got, unfortunately, we’ve got appropriations that need to be negotiated in the coming month. So, if those run smoothly, I think that could open a pathway.”

But the House and Senate’s failure to pass border security and foreign military aid bills amid GOP infighting over the party’s election-year strategy underscores how dysfunctional Congress is right now. And the clock is ticking according to Yates.

“The longer you go past this spring, the more difficult it is in an election year, in particular,” says Yates. “So, I think there’s a very small window that folks are looking at for this spring, and we’re trying to be as vocal as possible to ensure that Congress knows what needs to get done.”

Meantime, Yates says Ag lawmakers on both sides of the Capitol have drawn ‘lines in the sand’ on what compromises they’re willing to make to get a farm bill, lines that have changed little from last year.

Story courtesy of the NAFB News Service and Matt Kaye/Berns Bureau Washington

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