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NFU: House 'Abandons' Rural America

NFU: House 'Abandons' Rural America

House cancels all votes in October, prompting negative reaction.

National Farmers Union President Roger Johnson expressed disappointment Monday following U.S. House of Representatives Majority Leader Eric Cantor's announcement of the remaining votes in the House, which does not include the 2012 Farm Bill.

Cantor revealed also that all October votes would be cancelled, meaning the House will meet only eight days in September. They are scheduled to reconvene post-election, on Nov. 13. The Senate is expected to cancel October votes as well.

NFU's Johnson said the premature departure would leave unfinished business, namely a vote on the farm bill.

House cancels all votes in October, prompting negative reaction.

"The 2008 Farm Bill expires on Sept. 30. Congress is well aware of its expiration, and sadly leadership has succumbed to political pressure and will leave with unfinished business," Johnson said.

He added that the farm bill affects 16 million jobs and is "the single largest investment in rural America." He said if a farm bill is not passed now, it will be harder to get one passed in the lame duck session, and without one, farmers have little certainty.

"The agriculture sector is willing to do its fair share, however we need certainty in order to make business and planting decisions for the coming year," Johnson said.

The House leaves behind other business as well, including reforms to the U.S. postal service and issues related to the sequestration process or 'fiscal cliff,' which will result in cuts to non-defense programs.

"It is disappointing that leadership has chosen to leave us hanging because of political games," Johnson said.

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