Farm bill negotiators are still trying to concoct language that would deny subsidies to farmers with large off-farm streams of income. “It is a dicey subject. I believe we can reach an accord,” said Chairman Tom Harkin, Iowa Democrat. It’s also one of the last issues to be negotiated.
Meanwhile, the White House Monday said President Bush would veto the bill as it currently is written. “I understand members will be meeting about this tomorrow, so things still may be a bit fluid. But, as it stands now, it is not something the president would support,” Scott Stanzel wrote in an email, according to The Politico.
Stanzel: “The farm bill proposal currently being discussed by conferees lacks important reforms the president has repeatedly called for. With farm incomes at an all time high, Congress shouldn’t be asking taxpayers to pay for even more government subsidies for farmers. The proposal before Congress would dramatically increase spending, in part by masking additional spending in budgetary gimmicks and accounting tricks. Now is the time to modernize our agricultural policies for the future, but Members of Congress have not risen to this challenge.”