The Hagstrom Report

Agriculture News As It Happens


No farm bill floor plans from Boehner or Cantor

Rep. John Boehner, D-Ohio
Rep. John Boehner, D-Ohio
House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, refused to guarantee that the farm bill will get floor time, and a spokeswoman for Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va., also did not discuss floor time in a statement, National Journal Daily reported Thursday.

“There’s some good reforms in this farm bill,” Boehner answered when asked to address complaints from some conservatives that the legislation does not go far enough, the newsletter reported.

“There are other parts of the farm bill that I have concerns about,” he said, adding “you know we’ve got a Soviet-style dairy program in America today, and one of the proposals in the farm bill ... actually make it worse.”

“I’ll reserve the rest of my comments on the farm bill until I get a closer look at it,” Boehner said, according to the report.

“We appreciate the hard work of the chairman and the Ag committee and will be discussing the committee's product with our members in the weeks ahead,” said Laena Fallon, a Cantor spokeswoman said, according to the report.

House Agriculture Committee Chairman Frank Lucas, R-Okla., and ranking member Collin Peterson, D-Minn., have both urged the House leadership to bring up the bill.

Meanwhile, Politico reported that Republicans on the House Agriculture Committee want the leadership to bring up the bill.

Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa
Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa
“Bring this bill to the floor — fast,” said Iowa Republican Rep. Steve King, who is running for reelection against Christie Vilsack, the wife of Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack. “I would’ve been happy to bring this to the floor last night, the minute it passed out of committee.”

King refuses to even entertain the idea that his leadership would extend current policy, Politico reported, saying he would be “terribly disappointed if we don’t have floor time to debate this ag bill.”

Rep. Tim Huelskamp, R-Kan, who voted against the bill in committee, told Politico the issue is difficult, and noted that “We have a lot of folks that won with 55 percent and less in rural areas.”