President Joe Biden will meet with the four leaders of the House and Senate Agriculture committees Thursday to discuss a new farm bill.

Senate Ag Chairwoman Deb Stabenow, D-Mich., told Agri-Pulse Wednesday that the late-afternoon gathering at the White House will be “a general meeting where he just wants to touch base with all of us and share his priorities and hear from us how it's going.”

The Senate committee’s top Republican, John Boozman of Arkansas, told reporters that Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack would also participate in the meeting. Politico first reported on plans for the meeting.

Boozman said he looked forward to talking to Biden “about some of our things that we'd like to see in the farm bill, but probably more importantly, really get an idea of what he wants to see in the farm bill.”

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There are issues to discuss beyond funding for the legislation, said Boozman. “Money is one thing. But again, there's a lot of policy. It's how you spend that money.”

He said that the White House decision to schedule the meeting is “a really good step in the right direction, because, you know, farm bills are generally not partisan issues."

House Ag Committee Chairman Glenn Thompson said the meeting will happen tomorrow afternoon "after votes." He said he assumed the lawmakers would be discussing the farm bill.

Thompson said he felt it was too early to "talk details" about the bill's contents. He emphasized that the committee was still in the process of conducting listening sessions to determine what the bill should look like.

"We're still in a listening mode and we really don't have too much to negotiate right now other than maybe pledging our support for each other to get this done and get it done on time," Thompson told reporters.

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