Views of the House
defeat of the Farm Bill
Tuesday, June 25, 2013 3:26 AM
Minnesota Farm Bureau Federation President Kevin Paap: "It was very disappointing to see a fiscally responsible, bi-partisan farm bill fail on the floor of the House of Representatives. Agriculture knows how to do their chores and that they need to get done. This is no exception. Minnesota farmers need the certainty that comes with a five-year bill, and we will continue to work to make sure that this gets brought back up in order that we have legislation signed into law by the time the current farm bill expires in September."
Minnesota Corn Growers Association President Tom Haag: "Minnesota's corn farmers are greatly disappointed that the House did not pass the farm bill. This farm bill would have reduced our country's deficit, made necessary reforms to farm policy, and strengthened risk management tools available to farmers that protect the nation's food supply. In the end, it appears that farmers got caught in the middle of another partisan political battle where nobody - especially farmers - came out a winner. We thank House Agriculture Chairman Frank Lucas and Ranking Member Collin Peterson for their hard work and strong leadership during this process. MCGA remains hopeful that the farm bill can get back on track, and that the House will pass a farm bill that puts farmers and the American people ahead of politics as usual."
Center for Rural Affairs:
The final passage of the House Farm Bill failed in part because of huge cuts to the food stamp program and because the rules established for the debate did not allow for further consideration of needed reforms to federal crop insurance premium subsidies. The House Rules Committee did not allow amendments that would have reduced premium subsidies for those making over $750,000 in adjusted gross income. Nor did they allow a vote on an amendment that would have placed a cap on federal crop insurance premium subsidies to mega-farmers. This failed vote sends a clear signal that the Farm Bill needs to include much greater reform to achieve passage.
U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), a member of the Senate Agriculture Committee, which is responsible for crafting the Farm Bill: "Two years in a row the Senate passed a strong, long-term Farm Bill that is critical for producers, consumers and our entire economy. I have heard from countless Minnesota farmers and ranchers who need the support and certainty that this bill provides. I know Congressman Peterson worked hard to move the Farm Bill forward and the House needs to come together and figure out a way to get this done so our farmers have the continuity they need to thrive and succeed."
U.S. Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.): "With one in five Minnesota jobs linked to the farm economy, the House's failure to pass a five-year Farm Bill is a huge disappointment and a real disservice to producers and rural communities in Minnesota and across the country. We were able to pass a strongly bipartisan bill in the Senate, and I hope the House will revisit this soon so that we can finally pass this legislation that is so important to the economic future of Minnesota and the entire nation."
Rep. Tim Walz (D-Minn.), who voted in favor of the Farm Bill: "Washington is broken and it's long past time for folks out here to get things done and stop viewing compromise as a dirty word. This bill wasn't perfect but I knew that we could craft a better bill in conference if we just got it through the House. I'm deeply disappointed the bill failed. Doing nothing only costs the government more money, increases prices at the grocery store, and puts the squeeze on middle class families. Our nation deserves better. I will continue to fight to give rural America confidence and certainty."
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack: "The failure by the House leadership, for the second year in a row, to reach consensus on a Food, Farm and Jobs Bill is a tremendous disappointment for all Americans. Twice now, the U.S. Senate has done its job and passed balanced, comprehensive legislation with overwhelming bipartisan support. Unfortunately, the House version of this bill would have unfairly denied food assistance for millions of struggling families and their children, while failing to achieve needed reforms or critical investments to continue economic growth in rural America. As a result, the House was unable to achieve bipartisan consensus."