Food stamps, crop subsidies among Senate farm bill amendments

WASHINGTON Tue Jun 19, 2012 12:53am EDT

A lunch meal portion waits at the Part of the Solution (POTS) soup kitchen and food pantry in the Bronx borough of New York, in this file image from December 13, 2006. At a cost of $39 billion to the U.S. Treasury, nearly one in 10 Amercians, 28 million people, are expected to rely on food stamps. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton/Files

A lunch meal portion waits at the Part of the Solution (POTS) soup kitchen and food pantry in the Bronx borough of New York, in this file image from December 13, 2006. At a cost of $39 billion to the U.S. Treasury, nearly one in 10 Amercians, 28 million people, are expected to rely on food stamps.

Credit: Reuters/Shannon Stapleton/Files

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Proposals to avert bigger cuts in food stamps and reduce certain crop subsidies are among more than 70 amendments the U.S. Senate will consider this week to a massive farm bill.

Senate leaders struck a bipartisan deal late on Monday to clear the way for debate and votes on the stalled legislation beginning on Tuesday, a Democratic aide said.

The U.S. farm law covers everything from food stamps to crop subsidies to soil erosion - and several other hot-button issues in an election year.

Negotiators in the Democratic-led Senate whittled the number of amendments in the 10-year bill from roughly 300 to 73.

A number of amendments are meant to put lawmakers on the record on hot-button spending issues in an election year. They include debt reduction, funding for food stamps, support for subsidies and pushing spending back to 2008 levels.

One unrelated, politically charged proposal by Republican Marco Rubio of Florida would allow businesses to give merit-based raises and bonuses to union workers without first getting the consent of labor leaders.

Democrats assert Republicans are waging war on unions, while supporters of Rubio's proposal and others like it say some unions are too powerful and have, in certain cases, infringed on the rights of business.

Analysts say the odds are slim Congress will enact a new farm law before the current one expires on September 30. Election-year and budget-cutting pressures have slowed action.

The Senate bill as written would cut $4 billion from the food stamp program but Republicans want larger reductions.

The Senate also would cut crop subsidies by $13 billion over 10 years and environmental conservation by $6 billion.

(Reporting by John Crawley and Charles Abbott; Editing by Lisa Shumaker)

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Comments (7)
amos033 wrote:
Startling news. Obama just added 800,000 new food stamp applicants in addition when he granted taht amnesty. How will it affect the cuts in the farm bill? And I assume the 800,000 are entitled to Unemployment Benefits as well? Help me figure this one out folks?

Jun 18, 2012 12:28am EDT  --  Report as abuse
I’ll help you figure it out Amos — there’s no consumers to help get the economy going. Remember all those Bush tax cuts that made the 1% richer than they’ve ever been? Well, the middle class paid for that. Now the middle class is underwater. The rich (job creators?) are doing better than ever though.

Jun 18, 2012 12:42am EDT  --  Report as abuse
DeannaTx wrote:
@amos033,

Epic fail at attempting to distort.

It would be easier for you to figure out of you stuck to truth and facts.
You assume all those children born to parent here illegally which completely leaves out theres more to qualifying than just being born to parents here illegally. For those who aren’t young children (which have been for the most part excluded from deportation for several decades and administrations) they must be actively engaged in persuing an education and have a record of academic achievement or be have been steadly gainfully employed for a required number of years. And self sustaining financially. Add to that no criminal record.
Which eliminates the vast majority of the 800,000 additions you claim.

You left out to much in your assertation to be taken with any level of seriousness.

Jun 18, 2012 12:48am EDT  --  Report as abuse
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