House Will Take Up Farm Bill This Week

Kevin McCarthy, the House Majority Leader, says Congress will take up the farm bill debate sometime within the week. The House schedule has the weeks session running from Tuesday through Friday. The House Rules Committee has issued a notice that it expects to "grant a rule that may provide a structured amendment process for floor consideration of H.R. 2, the Agriculture and Nutrition Act of 2018." Its not clear yet if Republicans have the required 215 Republican votes theyll need to pass the bill. House Democrats say no Democrat will vote for the bill because of the changes it would make to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program.

After a meeting with President Trump at the White House on Thursday, House Ag Committee Chair Michael Conaway says he still doesnt have the votes needed to pass the bill but will spend the weekend trying to convince more Republicans to vote for the bill. We believe well get there, Conway says. "Weve got several folks that are still reading the bill and coming to their own conclusions. Weve got a lot of undecideds. Ill be working with them over the weekend to get them where they need to be and provide them with the information they need to understand exactly what the bill does."

Cotton Group Wants House Farm Bill Passed

The National Cotton Council is asking the House of Representatives to approve the Agriculture and Nutrition Act of 2018 and to do so without any amendments that could potentially damage farm policy. NCC Chair Ron Craft says the legislation contains critically important policies for cotton producers, as well as the entire U.S. cotton industry. He adds that even though budget constraints meant not all of the cotton industrys priorities were included in the bill, the Ag Committee should be commended for the work it did. Cotton producers rely on the certainty and predictability of farm law to obtain the financing necessary for capital investments and annual crop production, he says. "Without strong commodity and crop insurance policies as a foundation for U.S. agriculture, lenders would be hesitant to provide financing to an industry thats operating at the mercy of weather extremes and volatile global markets." Craft says the current trade tensions further emphasize the need for having a strong and predictable farm policy. The nations 20,000 cotton farms and other cotton businesses generate more than $21 billion in annual revenue.


Story source: NAFB

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