WASHINGTON, JUNE 12, 2013 – Speaker of the House John Boehner, R-Ohio, said that, despite some concerns about a new farm bill, he plans to vote for the measure.
“I’ve got concerns about the farm bill, as I’ve told our members, but doing nothing means that we get no changes in the farm program, no changes in the nutrition program,” he said during a press conference this morning.
“As a result I’m going to vote for the farm bill to make sure the good work of the agriculture committee and whatever the floor might do to improve this bill gets to a conference so we can get the kind of changes that people want in our nutrition programs and our farm programs.”
Boehner previously served on the House Committee on Agriculture, but has never voted for a farm bill during his time in Congress. His comments are likely to boost the prospects for passage this year – especially within the GOP caucus that has been widely splintered in its support for a new bill.
In 2012, House leaders repeatedly declined to schedule a floor vote on the farm bill and cited the lack of votes as the reason for not trying to advance the legislation. But several GOP House members are worried that failure to pass a farm bill this year will harm their chances in the 2014 elections.
The Senate passed its version of the farm bill on Monday and the House is expected to start debate on the farm bill as early as next week.
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