With the government shutdown now over, elected officials are turning their attention to other pieces of legislation, such as the farm bill. Farmers have been stuck in the middle of a partisan squabble over the nutrition title of the farm bill, but momentum to take another crack at passing a farm bill is once again building.
The best way to continue building momentum toward passage of a new farm bill is through the grassroots efforts of farmers. The Minnesota Corn Growers Association has a “Take Action Now” page where farmers can easily contact their legislator directly and tell them why it’s important to get a new farm bill passed as soon as possible.
I know, I know. We’ve heard reports about the farm bill getting close to passage several times over the last few years, only to see it fail for one reason or another. It’s frustrating, but that doesn’t mean farmers should simply throw in the towel and become apathetic.
If farmers keep making their voices heard, momentum will continue building and elected officials will have no choice but to pass a farm bill that protects our nation’s food supply, supports farmers, boosts conservation programs and helps put food on the table for millions of American families.
Here are some recent signs that momentum to pass a farm bill is once again building:
- At an event in Golden Valley on Friday, Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar said “we would like to get this done and get this done fast” when talking about a farm bill.
- Rep. Collin Peterson also weighed in, saying that there are still some political hurdles to clear: “We have things to work out. “Are they insurmountable? No.”
- Minnesota will be well represented at the negotiating table as lawmakers try to find common ground on a farm bill. Klobuchar, Peterson and Rep. Tim Walz are part of a conference committee tasked with helping to break the stalemate. The fact that a conference committee has been named after a government shutdown and months of sluggish progress on the farm bill is a sign that momentum to finally get something passed is building.
- Even president Obama wants to see a new farm bill happen.Obama included passing a new farm bill in recent remarks about his top three post-shutdown priorities for the rest of the year.
If you’re a farmer, it’s up to you to keep this momentum going. Make your voice heard today!