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House Dems Introduce Senate Farm Bill

House Dems Introduce Senate Farm Bill

Legislators see Senate Farm Bill as option to move forward

Rep. Cheri Bustos, D-Ill., along with Iowa Democrats Dave Loebsack and Bruce Braley Wednesday introduced the exact text of the Senate Farm Bill in the House of Representatives.

"Our economy needs a Farm Bill, I fought to move this process forward, and partisanship sadly stood in the way of a House version," Bustos noted. "We owe it to the American people to get this done, so I'm calling on House leadership to swiftly schedule a vote on this bipartisan Senate-passed Farm Bill."

Legislators see Senate Farm Bill as option to move forward

The Senate Farm Bill could be a step forward following last week's defeat of the House's Farm Bill 195-234. It may also serve as an option for Democratic lawmakers who found crop insurance cutbacks lacking and cuts to Supplemental Nutrition Assistance to be too steep in the House version.

And there's support from Senate Democrats, too – at least in the form of a refusal to allow more stopgap measures. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid warned earlier this week that the Senate would not pass an extension of the Farm Bill again, urging House Speaker John Boehner to quickly pass the Senate's bill.

"I want everyone within the sound of my voice, as well as my colleagues on the other side of the Capitol, to know that the Senate will not pass another temporary farm bill," Reid announced Monday.  "The speaker should vote on the (Senate version) in the House now – today," he added.

With the likelihood of an extension apparently weak, Bustos noted the bill "may not be perfect, but Senate Democrats and Republicans were able to come together to get a bill passed, and the House should do the same."

According to reports from The Hill, House Ag Committee leaders haven't forged any new plans for the bill, despite a Wednesday conference meeting to discuss the issue.

Tweets from Ag Committee chairman Rep. Frank Lucas, R-Okla., on the committee's feed remained optimistic, however, noting just because the Farm Bill wasn't passed, "that doesn't mean process is over. Doesn't mean reforms included in (the House Farm Bill) aren't important & won't become law."

As the finger-pointing continues about what party ultimately caused the bill's demise, and few answers have appeared, the House will leave for its July 4 holiday recess on Friday.

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