Debbie Stabenow, the ranking member of the Senate Ag Committee, wants to defend the farm bill from possible budget cuts that could come during the budget reconciliation process that got started this week.
Politico’s Morning Ag Report says she filed an amendment on Wednesday that’s intended to keep all farm bill programs away from any spending reductions from 2019 to 2028. The move is seen as mostly symbolic, coming as the Senate gets ready to consider the GOP budget resolution, which would pave the way for tax reform. The Senate’s budget resolution spares the Ag Committee from having to come up with cuts, while the House resolution calls for $10 billion in cuts over the next 10 years.
Those two measures will have to be reconciled. “As we write the Farm Bill,” Stabenow says, “we need to send a message to our farmers, families, and rural communities that they are not on the chopping block for cuts. This amendment protects farm programs from harmful budgets cuts.” She says the amendment also helps to protect America’s land and water, as well as invests in the country’s farmers and small towns.