Grassley Sees No Path to Farm Bill Despite House Markup

A key farm state Senator sees no pathway to a new farm bill ahead of the next deadline in September despite the House Ag Committee voting out its bill last month. Senator Chuck Grassley of Iowa was hopeful early in the year, but no more.

He says, “I don’t see a path, and every month that’s gone by since February, when I was very hopeful, it’s gotten less. More negative.”

As for the House Ag Committee-passed bill getting to the House floor, he says “Whether it’ll come up on the floor of the House is going to be up to the House Rules Committee and the Speaker, so I can’t predict that.” But three Freedom Caucus hardliners on Rules may oppose floor action over the bill’s price tag, the largest in farm bill history. That’s if Speaker Mike Johnson tasks Rules with the bill.

And while Grassley says it’s good news House Ag moved a farm bill, Senate Ag is still stuck. Grassley says, “Even though the Chairwoman has put out some framework, and even some text, I don’t think it answers the major problem that we have is that there ought to be more farm in the farm bill, which means that we need some accommodation in the safety net for farmers.”

So, reference price subsidy triggers reflect inflation since the 2018 farm bill in diesel, interest rates, seed, and fertilizer. Senate Ag Chairwoman Debbie Stabenow’s (D-MI) plan for reference prices is weighted toward Southern crops.

Story courtesy of Matt Kaye/Berns Bureau and NAFB News Service