Ag Policy Blog

Conservative Praise for New Farm Bill

Chris Clayton
By  Chris Clayton , DTN Ag Policy Editor
Connect with Chris:

I am shocked! Shocked, I tell you!

After all, it seemed House leaders were expecting to bask in glow of glory over the farm bill after they appeased the conservative think tanks on Massachusetts Avenue by dismissing the crazy talk of passing a bipartisan farm bill and instead opted to go the separatist route.

The GOP assured that bipartisanship in the 113th House of Representatives will be held to the naming of post offices and resolutions honoring National Cheer up the Lonely Day.

And yet, in an inconceivable act abusive use of modifiers in press statements, conservative groups on Thursday did not pat House Republican on the back for culling off nutrition programs from the farm bill.

No, really. I'm not bull jiving you.

Heritage Foundation, which championed splitting the baby in half, was somewhat incredulous on Thursday that the House then didn't throw out the split baby with the bathwater as well. Republican leaders didn't grasp that what Heritage really wanted was "real reform" of farm programs. Heritage also challenged GOP leaders for violating their own three-day posting period for the bill before rushing it to the floor.

As Heritage wrote, "They prohibited legislators from introducing amendments. And, they played a game of bait and switch by claiming this bill was the same text from the failed House farm bill of a few weeks ago.

"In fact, they made this new bill even worse—by making sneaky changes to the bill text so that some of the costliest and most indefensible programs no longer expire after five years, but live on indefinitely. This means the sugar program that drives up food prices will be harder to change, because it doesn’t automatically expire. It also means the new and radical shallow loss program that covers even minor losses for farmers will indefinitely be a part of the law."…

Club for Growth, who has helped keep the GOP shop nice and tidy with its "Primary my Congressman" campaign, also let House leaders know that there will be some after-hours cleaning required at the club.

“We highly suspect that this whole process is a ‘rope-a-dope’ exercise” of “splitting up the farm bill only as a means to get to conference with the Senate where a bicameral back-room deal will reassemble the commodity and food stamp titles, leaving us back where we started,” Club for Growth said in a statement.…

National Taxpayers Union said that's OK, we got your back. No, I got that wrong. Taxpayers union felt taxpayers were stabbed in the back. NTU Executive Vice President Pete Sepp criticized the debate process for not allowing amendments to be considered, preventing pro-taxpayer, and pro-consumer, reforms from becoming reality:

“Today's vote, due to the positive step of separating food stamp and agricultural policy legislation, may have initially given the appearance that federal farm policy was turning its snout away from the trough.

“Unfortunately, taxpayers were stabbed in the back as the GOP rammed through an even heftier bill than the President requested or what the Democratic Senate decided to spend. As a result, Americans concerned about higher deficits, rising food prices, and corporate welfare can only watch as the hogs continue to be fed."

That's some good metaphoric language, though, using words like "snout" and "trough" when talking about farm policy. I get it.

The Competitive Enterprise Institute, "Free Markets and Limited Government," decried the fleecing of taxpayers from this farm bill. "The legislation greatly expands the crop insurance subsidy program, where farmers’ premiums and insurance companies’ administrative costs are heavily subsidized. It includes no means tests for those subsidies. It leaves in place the sugar program, which is a central planning scheme that allocates domestic supply, restricts imports and sets prices substantially higher than the world price."

With friends like this, who needs Democrats?

I can be found on Twitter @ChrisClaytonDTN


To comment, please Log In or Join our Community .

melvin meister
7/14/2013 | 11:09 AM CDT
Chris please coment on the fact that permenant farm law was repealed in this farm bill .This has long been the GOP and right wing think tanks goal. This removes the need to pass any farm bill .farmers got duped once again .
7/13/2013 | 7:58 AM CDT
I still think the ultimate goal for many of these groups is elimination of most farm programs. The "permanent title" for Title 1 programs is an interesting debate ploy for the conference committee. But the Conservative groups are right -- these Title 1 programs are not the "disaster programs" of the past, but rather a means of protecting bankers and well established farmers to build estates and become the new class of nobles, all using taxpayer subsidies! And voting Republican!
John Olson
7/12/2013 | 1:24 PM CDT Check it out Jay - John Fund did not fall off the turnip truck yesterday.
Jay Mcginnis
7/12/2013 | 11:42 AM CDT
Organizing support for riots John? Really,,, is that before or after the black helicopters attack while all those "Soviet" Russian soldiers that are being seen in the US take over? Oh yeah and the Muslim Brotherhood finally imposes Shiria Law in the US backed by an Ethiopian born president with no birth certificate! YEP,,, MAKES A LOT OF SENSE TO ME! Go for it Tea Party, lets see your logic clench the next election, just as it did on 2012!
John Olson
7/12/2013 | 7:49 AM CDT
That is our rinos - busy targeting the largest farmers with millions in annual benefits and small farmers with back stabs. Oblivious to Holder and press organizing and ginning up support for riots in Zimmerman trial.