Ag Policy Blog
Chris Clayton DTN Ag Policy Editor

Wednesday 12/19/12

House Leaders Again Hit Pause Button on Farm Bill

House leaders are hitting the pause button the farm bill once again.

Politico reported Tuesday night that House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, fears losing Republican votes on a final fiscal package if leaders throw a full-fledged farm bill into the mix as well.

Politico quotes a Boehner aide saying, “We can’t drop a farm bill in the middle of whatever is negotiated. A 1,000-page bill on top of whatever is negotiated will just make our vote situation harder. If we can agree on a top-line number, we suspect the committees will have a much easier time getting to a bill next year under regular order.”

However, House leaders do plan to negotiate with the Obama administration a final number on savings from the farm bill that the House and Senate Agriculture Committee leaders would have to achieve when they eventually move a farm bill, assuming leadership is willing to then bring the legislation to the floor.

The major issue now is crafting enough extension language to deal with all of the programs before Jan. 1 when a potential price spike would occur in dairy. Without an extension of the 2008 dairy programs, or a new program, the dairy prices revert back to the 1949 permanent law. USDA would effectively be forced to drive up milk prices to more than $38 per hundredweight, more than doubling the price of milk for consumers. Earlier this month in D.C., House Ag Chairman Frank Lucas, R-Okla., told reporters he supported the new dairy program crafted by committee ranking member Collin Peterson, D-Minn. Boehner, who had served on the ag committee earlier in his career, also worked on dairy policy. Last summer, Boehner referred to Peterson's plan as a "Soviet-style" dairy program.

Lucas also had indicated to reporters earlier this month that there was a possibility the farm bill would face an extension, despite the resistance from Senate Ag Chairwoman Debbie Stabenow, D-Mich. Lucas told reporters he would be ready to again markup a bill early in 2013 if that were the case.

To recap, House leaders in July declared they had to hit the "pause button" on the farm bill, as Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va., put it at the time, after the Senate beat expectations and voted a bill off the floor. The House Agriculture Committee completed its work in late July, but House leadership said they would consider the farm bill after the summer break. Then, appearing that the GOP could win the presidency, House leaders didn't want to give President Obama a bill he could sign in a farm state such as Iowa. Cantor said on the campaign trail with a congressional candidate in Idaho that House leaders would "deal with the farm bill" after the election. Cantor has now successfully dealt with the farm bill by effectively running out the clock on the pause button.

The Politico piece from Tuesday can be found at…

Follow me on Twitter @ChrisClaytonDTN

Posted at 6:52AM CST 12/19/12 by Chris Clayton
Comments (3)
As potentially harmful as delay could be to the Ag Sector, the dearth of Rural Development Monies is killing a lot of construction-in turn, killing jobs, both for the construction, as well as those generated by Rural Community infrastructure upgrades. In Belmond, we got a new Water Plant and good-sized Medical Facility before those funds started drying up. They DID create a number of jobs, which, in turn moved more revenue to local business. For instance if you're a small town supermarket, your orders go up, which pushes up other town's economies-see how it all works. Except, at this moment it's NOT working, and we have consumer prices rising, like the milk mentioned in the article, with more people with reduced employment or unemployed. As Mr Preston eloquently said, "Nothing from nothing leaves nothing..."
Posted by Ric Ohge at 9:56AM CST 12/19/12
Cantor / Boehner need to "lead,follow OR get the hell out of the way"
Posted by W Lee Deutsche at 10:42AM CST 12/19/12
The potential doubling of milk prices is viewed as a total disaster by many. RFS is a major factor in the doubling or tripling of corn and soybean prices. Where is the outrage over the government mandated use of ethanol?
Posted by Lon Truly at 8:21AM CST 12/21/12
Post a Blog Comment:
Your Comment:
DTN reserves the right to delete comments posted to any of our blogs and forums, for reasons including profanity, libel, irrelevant personal attacks and advertisements.
Blog Home Pages
March  2015
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
8 9 10 11 12 13 14
15 16 17 18 19 20 21
22 23 24 25 26 27 28
29 30 31            
Subscribe to Ag Policy Blog RSS
Recent Blog Posts
  • Ag Groups Ask GOP Candidates to Check Out Green Power
  • Iowa Political Event Puts Spotlight on Ag Policy
  • ASA Seeks to Change Dialogue on GMO Labeling Debate
  • Farmers and Battles Over State Taxes
  • Former Congressman Looks at Ag Policy Challenges Ahead
  • One More ARC-PLC Analysis as Base Acre Deadline Looms
  • Ag Contracts Transitioning to Ag Consolidation
  • Tentative Deal Reached in West Coast Ports Labor Dispute
  • Senator Turns Crop Insurance into a Pork Parody
  • All About That Base
  • Dueling Biotech Labeling Efforts in Congress
  • Crop Insurance Cuts and the Chronic Budget Problem
  • Great, Another COOL Blog
  • Ag Groups Seek to Avoid Cuts in Crop Insurance
  • Senators Renew Effort to Cap Crop Insurance Premium Subsidies
  • Congressman Presses EPA on maps Leading to CWA Hearing
  • The Conflicting Signals Around Agriculture and Climate Change
  • FSA Head Making the Rounds on Farm Program Enrollment
  • Capturing the Drama of Farmland Transfers
  • Iowa Seeks to Ramp Up Politics of Ethanol