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HomeAg NewsGrassley Says Stabenow Not Giving Up on Bipartisan Farm Bill

Grassley Says Stabenow Not Giving Up on Bipartisan Farm Bill

Now that the House Ag Committee has sent a farm bill to the full House, a key question is if the Senate Ag Committee will follow suit. One senator recently provided some insight.

Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) says Senate Ag Chair Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) is not giving up on reaching a farm bill compromise with him and other panel Republicans. “I think she’s trying to work something out herself here in the United States Senate,” according to Grassley. “And I think she’s sincerely trying to work something out, because I recently had a conversation with her, and she gave me a list of several things I have an interest in that she hopes will bring me around.”

But Grassley wants to see his USDA Spending Accountability Act to cap the secretary’s CCC spending discretion included as it was in the just advanced House bill. He says, “Chairwoman Stabenow does not include the provision in her framework, but I encouraged her and Ranking Member Boozman to consider it in the Senate farm bill.”

Grassley says his measure would save eight billion dollars that could be used to boost crop subsidy triggers or reference prices. Stabenow and Ranking Member John Boozman (R-AR) won a commitment from Secretary Tom Vilsack earlier to tap into the CCC for trade promotion help, and Stabenow has lobbied House Democrats against CCC and SNAP limits.

Grassley meantime, says Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) isn’t ready to put a farm bill on the Senate floor. Grassley says, “He’s going to try to get things done that have support within the committees of those subjects that he had on his list, and he doesn’t see a bipartisan agreement in Ag. Unless there’s a bipartisan agreement in Ag, there’s no point in him putting it on the agenda.”

Back in the House, Ag Chair Glenn “GT” Thompson hopes to put pressure on the retiring Stabenow to compromise, but that seems unlikely given her repeated public statements that she won’t have her legacy be cutting SNAP. Nor is it certain yet that House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-LA) has the votes with his razor-thin majority, even with some cross-over Democrats, to bring up Thompson’s bill.

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

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