Farm bill? What farm bill?

Gun control. Immigration. Job creation.

And so much more. President Obama had a laundry list of issues he wants Congress to address, according to Tuesday night’s State of the Union speech. How much will actually get done remains to be seen, but bet on more being said than done.

One issue that Obama didn’t mention was the farm bill. Remember the farm bill? Hundreds of billions of dollars for the food stamp program, and to support ag producers? It lapsed last year, as the R’s and D’s could not find common ground.

In their reactions to the speech last night, Sen. John Thune and Rep. Kristi Noem, the two Republicans in South Dakota’s three-member delegation, didn’t mention the farm bill. The Democrat in the mix, Sen. Tim Johnson, said he regretted Obama not bringing it up.

Johnson did join in an effort to cap payments to producers, making it $125,000 per producer, or $250,000 per couple. The bill, dubbed the Farm Program Integrity Act of 2013, was sponsored by Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa.

Congress and Obama have a full plate after the SOTU speech. Will they find room on it for ag policies?

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About Tom Lawrence

I'm a South Dakota native who has covered the state since 1978. The events, officials, celebrities and news have provided a remarkable pageant to watch pass. Spending time with and learning about the people of South Dakota, almost always strong, modest, wry, smart, decent and friendly, has been the best part of the work. I live in Mitchell.

3 thoughts on “Farm bill? What farm bill?

  1. Some interesting statements from the coffee group this morning about that socialist farm bill: “Don’t these farmers understand that when they accept federal money they lose their rights under the constitution and are under the rules stipulated by the federal government! We MUST support the House Republican Conservatives who want to reduce or eliminate subsidies and crop insurance to farmers! Farmers have to understand that simply can’t listen to “I am from the government and I am her to help”! Don’t farmers understand that if they take their help and money the farmers have to do what they are told to do! This is what got us into all this trouble now…people taking taxpayer funds! Subsidies to farmers works the same way as welfare to the poor…they ALL get dependant on the federal government…our tax money! Subsidies are a way of controlling farmers! Don’t you think it’s time these farmers acted like true Americans and stood up and took care of themselves?” We TeaPublicans WILL take back America in 2014 and 2016…and we WILL take back that socialist farm bill too!

  2. Too bad the “Teapublicans” can’t convince their subsidy-loving Congresswoman to follow that thinking. If they are serious about reforming the Farm Bill, they might consider toning down their rhetoric and making friends with some Democratic farmers who recognize the ills of big subsidies for big corporate farms.

  3. My understanding is that finally there may come a cap on what USDA pays out to farmers- Oh don’t panic- we are talking about a cap of $125, or $250, and that all you get- there are many calling themselves farmers when they are corporate entities- drawing millions in payments- that needs to stop -period. We pick on the food stamp receipient too much in this debate- after all the benefit of food stamps is not the low-income client- it is the producer- middle-man- of the food product- so let’s please get some perspective on this- Sen George McGovern would be so proud that Dept of Ag was larger than the Pentagon- I see his point but with the systemitizing of agriculture- what are it’s negatives??

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