March 26, 2019

House conservatives aim to derail farm bill over immigration

18 May 2018, 05:30 | Devin Moran

GOP fights over crucial farm bill as lawmakers demand immigration vote first

House GOP leaders Paul Ryan and Kevin Mc Carthy at the Capitol on May 16. With Democratic opposition to the current farm

As for the conservatives, McCarthy told reporters on Thursday that he'd already promised the Freedom Caucus they would get a floor vote on the Goodlatte bill in June, so he didn't understand why they were now demanding a vote sooner.

The battle over the sugar program, a web of price supports, loans and tariffs that critics say gouges consumers, is one of the key battles in this year's farm bill, a five-year renewal of federal farm and nutrition policy. However this 12 months's invoice accommodates measures tightening work and job coaching necessities for meals stamps, which have pushed Democrats away. But there was no indication that GOP leaders planned to delay Friday's vote.

"I think we need to measure the success of this program from how many people we move from support to a job, and I think that is exactly what this bill does", said Marshall.

Democrats are staunchly opposed to the GOP-crafted bill, primarily because of the changes to the food stamp program.

Even if the now long-shot House farm bill passes anytime soon, let alone when expected, it is considered dead on arrival in the Senate, where Agriculture Committee chairman Pat Roberts, R-KS, and ranking member Debbie Stabenow, D-MI, are preparing to markup their version of the bill, which won't have the work requirements that have caused all House Democrats to say they won't vote for the bill. Many of them take issue with a provision that imposes work requirements for adults on the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP. They have have been in limbo ever since President Trump ended the Obama-era Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program previous year. "The Goodlatte bill is not only comprehensive, but it is an extension of President Obama's executive order so we are now having a discussion about the principles that the president has put out and which ones can actually get bipartisan support", he said.

We believe that we have a deal with this immigration deal. A band of moderate Republicans is also trying to force Ryan to bring up an immigration bill - one that would grant USA citizenship to some DREAMers, strengthen border security, and leave the legal immigration system as is. GOP leaders and conservatives have denounced the moderates' effort and are trying to block it.

Forty-nine lawmakers, including 20 Republicans, had signed the petition as of Thursday afternoon. The group is using the farm bill as leverage for an immigration debate on the House floor in hopes of firming up support from their core voters in the run-up to the November 6 congressional elections.

The lawmakers said details of the measures suggested by leadership remained in flux and a third, unspecified bill was possible.

McCarthy and Ryan are now scrambling for a Plan B, but their options are sparse.

The commitment comes as GOP leadership has been squeezed by frustrated Republican members from both sides of the ideological spectrum.

Ryan said earlier Thursday that there was no "specific" immigration legislation that that could pass the House at this time. It's been nearly six months since the president announced the end of the DACA program that protected the DREAMers.

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