Farm Bill Failure Impacts Farmers

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MISSOURI - The U.S. House of Representatives rejected a $500 billion Farm Bill in Washington Thursday that included both agricultural policies and policies regarding food stamps. The bill failed 195-234.

Republicans said the bill didn't have enough cuts and Democrats argued the food stamp cuts would impact too many Americans.

Missouri Farm Bureau President Blake Hurst said the group was "disappointed by the House of Representatives' failure to pass its version of the farm bill." Hurst added, "Agriculture is Missouri's largest industry."

The current farm bill expires on September 30. Hurst said he expects a farm bill to be passed before the current bill expires, but if a new bill is not passed, permanent law will take effect. "It goes back to the 1949 Farm Bill," said Hurst. 

Farmers' crops would be protected under current legislation, but Hurst said farmers, "Have no ability to plan for next year." Hurst said an uncertain future of the farm bill makes it difficult for farmers to plan.

Missouri representatives expressed their disappointment. Representative Vicky Hartzler said she is committed to "Going back to the drawing board and working to craft a Farm Bill that will cut waste, eliminate duplication, and expose fraud while ensuring the American people and abundant, safe, and affordable food supply."

Senator Claire McCaskill was not involved in the vote and put blame on the House of Representatives. "For the sake of our rural communities, and of job and business opportunities across Missouri, the House of Representatives needs to get its act together and get this job done."