Leahy Sends Message to House

Vermont Senator Patrick Leahy recently joined an increasingly loud chorus of voices trying to pressure the House of Representatives to take action on the 2012 Farm Bill before the 112th Congress adjourns.

For the past several months, the farm bill has been stalled in Congress. While the Senate and the House Agriculture Committee have each passed a version of the farm bill, the House GOP leadership has refused to vote on either proposal, preferring to wait until after the 2012 election.

With the election over and with only four weeks left in the lame duck session, lawmakers and farm advocacy groups are increasing their pressure on the House, hoping that they can finally push the farm bill through.

In a recent speech on the Senate floor, Vermont Senator Patrick Leahy laid the responsibility for the failure of the farm bill at the feet of the GOP leadership and called on Speaker Boehner to provide farmers the federal support they need.

“I have been frustrated by the refusal of the leadership of the House of Representatives to consider the legislation sent to them by the Senate to extend the farm bill. In fact, they blocked consideration of a bipartisan farm bill, one that mirrors the legislation passed in their own body by the House Agriculture Committee,” Leahy stated.

“I have been here nearly 38 years. I have served on the Senate Agriculture Committee all that time. I have never seen a case where the House Agriculture Committee—whether it is led by Democrats or by Republicans—passed a bipartisan farm bill only to see it blocked from a final vote by its own leadership.”

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Written by: Justin Ellison / Farm Plus Staff Writer