January 21, 2020

(Corrected)- Budget- Farm Bill; Trade; Regulations; and, Dep. Sec. Merrigan

Categories: Budget /Farm Bill /Trade

Budget: House Proposal, Senate Proposal- Farm Bill Implications

House Agriculture Committee Chairman Frank Lucas (R., Okla.) and Ranking Member Collin Peterson (D., Minn.) were guests on yesterday’s AgriTalk radio program with Mike Adams where both lawmakers discussed budget and policy issues.

Chairman Lucas indicated ( transcript) that, “Now, if you look at the ag side of the House [Budget Committee] proposal—and I’m more familiar with that than the Senate side—basically they propose somewhere in the range of about $30 billion in savings in what I would define as the non-nutrition programs. They actually have substantially higher savings proposed on the nutrition side.

“What I’m telling people is, because we need to write, as you well know, Mike, as many times as we’ve discussed it, a new comprehensive five-year farm bill, the House budget I view as guidance, and we’ll take what they propose very thoughtfully in place, but we’ll have to craft a comprehensive balanced bill that provides a safety net that will work that a majority of the membership in both bodies will pass.”

Chairman Lucas explained that, “There will be areas where we will achieve more savings than anyone can imagine possible, and there will be areas where it’s not possible to do some of the things discussed. But here, too, the Budget Committee gave us a number, not a long list of instructions. That’s the key, Mike. Let the Ag Committee, that understands agriculture and rural America, write the language. They gave us a number, and we’re going to do our best to meet it. But they didn’t give us instructions. My heartbeat was a little bit more consistent after I saw that.”