House, Senate reach deal on #MeToo legislation

14 December, 2018, 01:07 | Author: Darnell Patrick
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Trump told reporters at the White House on Tuesday that "the farm bill is in very good shape", and "our farmers are well taken care of".

The provision was championed in part by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, a Republican whose home state of Kentucky has long history of hemp production that's recently flourished under a federally approved pilot program in place since 2014. The vote barely passed, 206-203, with only five Democrats voting for and 17 Republicans voting against. She is also exploring whether some of those provisions could also be implemented in the House rules for the next Congress.

The legislation, announced Wednesday by Blunt and Sen.

The 807-page bill also offers improved crop insurance access for established farmers as well as novice farmers and offers financial assistance for farmers transitioning from conventional to organic farming - it also quadruples federal investment for organic research. Charles E. Grassley, R-Iowa, one of two farmers in the Senate and a member of the agriculture committee, said he would vote against the package over its expansion of federal subsidies to more distant relatives of farmers, such as their cousins, nephews and nieces.

The legislation had already passed the Senate and is now headed to the president, who is expected to sign it despite losing changes to the food stamp program that he supported. Ultimately, he said, legislators had to make a decision between making as many reforms as they could or allowing "America's farmers and ranchers to be held hostage". "It gives us some hope" that the USA can begin to make up for the potential loss of Chinese markets.

North Dakota's congressional delegation, all three of whom were tapped as farm bill negotiators, welcomed the final product Tuesday.


But the Senate, which finally caved on requiring lawmakers to pay out of pocket for sexual harassment settlements, rejected both of those provisions and neither ended up in the final bill.

Heitkamp said the final bill mirrors the Senate's version "with a few minor tweaks".

The Farm Bill still needs President Trump's signature before it becomes law.

The Farm Bill is the result of months of negotiations by lawmakers. Tim Walz, Minnesota's Democratic governor-elect and member of the House Agriculture Committee, did not vote, nor did U.S. Rep. Keith Ellison, the state's Democratic attorney general-elect.

Passage of the bill has been hailed in a largely bipartisan manner as it provides some financial certainty for farmers, a key Trump constituency that has been hurt by the USA trade war with China, a key buyer of US soy beans and other farm produce.

"This is a Farm Bill that will provide certainty to the nation's struggling farmers; maintain food security for millions of American families; provide for cleaner waterways, better soils, protected open space, healthier forests, and the preservation of family farms; make our drinking water safer; and give communities across rural America a much needed economic boost", Leahy said.

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