The federal Farm Bill failed last Friday after Republican lawmakers could not agree on the legislation without a separate vote on immigration enforcement. The bill was defeated by a vote of 198-213. Democrats who voted against the bill objected to new work requirements that would be imposed on food-stamp recipients.
The federal Farm Bill is renewed roughly every five years and funds food assistance programs as well as crop insurance and farmer subsidies. Current law runs through September 30th, by which time the Farm Bill must be renewed to sustain the programs it funds. The House plans to come back to the bill before that date. The bill is now in the Senate, where lawmakers will also cast their vote. The MCC will continue to report on the progress of the Farm Bill throughout the summer. Visit the Catholic Relief Services website for more information about the Farm Bill.