Expectation that a farm bill will emerge as a part of the fiscal cliff negotiations is somewhere between rumor and fact, said Dale Moore, spokesman for the Washington, D.C.-based American Farm Bureau Federation on Dec. 4.
“There is more and more talk about it being a part of the fiscal cliff package, but what we don’t yet know whether we are talking about a new five-year farm bill,” Moore said.
One potential sticking point is the House of Representatives may not have the votes to pass the farm bill, with some conservative Republicans wanting deeper cuts than $16 billion pared from food stamps in the Agriculture Committee-approved farm bill. Meanwhile, more moderate Republicans don’t want to cut any deeper and Democrats may withhold virtually all support for the bill. Moore said.