The U.S. House’s rejection of the nearly trillion-dollar “farm” bill has prompted talk on Capitol Hill of separating the legislation into two parts: agriculture programs and food stamps.
But will members of Congress support the split? It’s a decision Heritage policy experts Daren Bakst and Rachel Sheffield put at the top of their list for reforms to the current farm bill.
At last week’s Conversations with Conservatives, we got the inside scoop on what House members think about the farm bill’s failure and what to do next. Here are three key points:
1. A Step in the Right Direction
“[The current farm bill] is an insane system, and it has to go. I think we took a step in the right direction by killing the farm bill.” –Representative Tom McClintock (R-CA)
“Our leadership needs to take a lesson from this. … Start doing what is the right policy – the right conservative policy for America.” –Representative Raúl Labrador (R-ID)
2. Split the Bill
“I’ve never voted for a farm bill, ever, and it’s because I don’t support the idea of corporate welfare anymore than I do the idea of the kind of welfare that rewards people… to sit home and do nothing.” –Representative Matt Salmon (R-AZ)
“[We need] legislation that will restore the food stamp, or SNAP, program back to its original mission, which is to provide basic food commodities to the truly needy. –Representative Tom McClintock (R-CA)
3. Stop Adding New Costs to Expensive Farm Programs
“Repeal the corporate welfare system that forces taxpayers to bear the losses of farm interests, while guaranteeing those farm interests a profit, [and that uses those taxes to artificially inflate the prices] families have to pay at the grocery store.” –Representative Tom McClintock (R-CA)