Yesterday when I wrote about the so-called “Farm Bill,” I noted that 80 percent of it was food stamp. I wrote:
All good things, as farm bills go, but why on Earth would Republicans not insist the SNAP program be a separate bill and vote solely on farm issues?
Wisconsin Republican Sen. Ron Johnson has introduced a motion to send the Agriculture, Reform, Food and Jobs Act back to committee and divide it into two separate bills to be considered in two separate votes.
The move comes in part as a response to the fact that about 80 percent of spending in the current farm bill is set to go to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, food stamps. Crop insurance, commodities and conservation represents the remaining 20 percent of spending.
Johnson’s motion would divide the legislation into one bill that includes food assistance and another focused on the agricultural provisions.
“[The farm bill] is a great example of what’s wrong in Washington. Decades ago someone realized that combining food stamps and agriculture programs together in one bill is a great way to pass both with a minimum of debate and controversy,” Johnson said in a statement Tuesday. “That’s the only reason these unrelated provisions are linked today.”
The effort failed to pass, mainly on party lines. There were three RINOS that voted with the Democrats in the Senate.
The final vote was 59-40.