The “Washington Insider” section of DTN reported yesterday (link requires subscription) that, “Democratic members of Congress continue their drumbeat for an official conference, but GOP House leadership and House Ag Chairman Frank Lucas, R-Okla., say an attempt is being made to see if a separate nutrition funding and reform bill can be developed.
“Some House Democratic members want a hearing on the topic, but Lucas said extensive farm bill-related discussions on the matter have already been held. What few observers admit at this stage is that any solo farm bill conference report would not likely make it through both chambers. But an agreement at the leadership level beyond the Ag panels to attach any agreement to another conference report, such as an increase in the debt limit, could stand a chance for the farm bill to be completed.
“Absent that, another extension of current law, perhaps a two-year extension, is the likely outcome. One suggestion for food stamp funding cuts has been to backload any cuts, and then do a study to determine if those cuts and reform measure would significantly and negatively impact the program.”