WASHINGTON, August, 1, 2013 – Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., on Thursday named conferees to reconcile differences in farm bill legislation approved by the Senate and House of Representatives, according to an announcement by Senator Thad Cochran, R-Miss.

Democrats: Senate Agriculture Chairwoman Debbie Stabenow, D-Mich., and Senators Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., Tom Harkin, D-Iowa, Max Baucus, D-Mont., Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn. and Michael Bennet, D-Colo.

Republicans: Ranking Member Thad Cochran, R-Miss. and Senators Pat Roberts, R-Kan., Saxby Chambliss, R-Ga., John Boozman, R-Ark., and John Hoeven, R-N.D.

“I appreciate Republican Leader McConnell appointing conferees prior to the August recess and setting the stage for us to try to finalize a 2013 farm bill,” said Cochran, ranking Republican on the Senate Agriculture Committee. “Reconciling differences between the Senate and House will be a challenge, but it is a job that needs to be done for an important sector of the American and global economy.”

The Senate passed a farm bill in June, while the House passed a farm bill minus the nutrition title last month.  Recent indications from House Agriculture Committee leadership indicate a nutrition-only bill is in progress. Senate Agriculture Committee Chairwoman Debbie Stabenow, D-Mich., expressed frustration with House Majority Leader Eric Cantor today following reports that he will bring a nutrition title with $40 billion in cuts to the House floor for a vote next month.

A new farm bill needs to be completed before the current extension expires on Sept. 30.


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