Members of Congress returned to their districts this week for the Fourth of July recess, with the fate of the farm bill still uncertain.
Many lawmakers are making the rounds in their districts to meet with constituents, including House Agriculture Committee Chairman Frank Lucas (R-Okla.) and Ranking Member Collin Peterson (D-Minn.). Both leaders have been met with concerns from farmers about Congress’ ability to pass a farm bill this year, which have intensified in some circles as talk continues about splitting the farm policy and nutrition portions of the bill into separate measures.
Several House Republicans have been vocal in support of this idea, though no announcements about the plan going forward have been made and Lucas, the top Republican agriculture leader in Congress, is strongly opposed.
NAWG also has concerns about splitting the farm bill into sections and wrote, with more than 500 other groups, to Speaker of the House John Boehner (R-Ohio) this week asking him to bring the farm bill back to the floor and pass it with a “broad coalition of lawmakers from both sides” that would continue to “represent the delicate balance between America’s farm, nutrition, conservation and other priorities”.
That letter is available in full online at www.wheatworld.org/farmbill.