House could move farm bill next week
House Agriculture Committee Chairman Michael Conaway, R-Texas, and ranking member Collin Peterson, D-Minn., both believe the House leadership may move the farm bill toward conference next week, Politico reported.
The House must take the first step by rejecting the changes that the Senate made to H.R.2, the bill first passed by the House, and requesting a conference with the Senate.
Conaway told Politico he is anxious to get started on the conference in order to get the bill signed into law by Sept. 30 when the current farm bill expires.
Politico also reported that Conaway and Peterson met last week for the first time since the Senate vote and that the meeting turned difficult in a discussion about the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. The Senate is unlikely to go along with the work requirements and the cutback in eligibility in the House bill.
Peterson told reporters, “I was not easy on him, and I told him bluntly what I think, which I always do.”
“He didn’t like it, but I said I’m just telling what I think and I’m trying to be helpful.”
“We get this thing into conference next week and if people become sensible it won’t take long to do,” said Peterson, who has said that he will side with the Senate on the SNAP issue.