Farm Bill Renewal in Jeopardy Over SNAP Funding Dispute


Republicans and Democrats have clashed over versions of the farm bill, with the most significant disagreements centering on SNAP benefits.

The GOP prefers allocating less funding to SNAP and more to farmers, while Democrats lean in the opposite direction. This divide could potentially cause a delay in renewing the bill.

The current bill is due to expire on September 30, giving Congress over three months to finalize a new version. This renewal was postponed from 2023 to this year. The farm bill, revised every five years, includes measures to support the agriculture industry and other programs such as SNAP.

Lawmakers suggest that the bill’s current version might be extended to address their disagreements. Democrats seem to support this, as it would maintain SNAP as is for a longer period.

“I’m not going to support a bad bill,” said Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), chairwoman of the Senate Agriculture Committee, in an interview with the Washington Post after agreeing to a delay.

The committee’s lead Republican, Sen. John Boozman (R-AR), concurred.

“If we don’t make meaningful improvements, if we don’t put more farm in the farm bill, we’re better off not having a new farm bill,” Boozman stated.

This extension might extend past the November general election into Congress’s “lame-duck” session before the new members assume office in January 2025. Even then, resolving the impasse appears challenging.

The funding that Republicans seek for farms, likely intended to raise price floors for agricultural commodities, would stem from curbing increases in SNAP benefits.

Former President Franklin Delano Roosevelt signed the initial farm bill, then called the Agricultural Adjustment Act of 1933, as part of the New Deal.

Over time, it has become essential legislation supporting farmers and has expanded to include various other benefits for Americans, such as SNAP and improved access to nutritious food.

Ross O'Keefe
Ross O'Keefe
Breaking News Reporter. Ross pitches and writes polished quick-hit pieces about a variety of subjects with a focus on politics. He graduated from the University of Maryland's Phillip Merrill College of Journalism in 2023.

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