The House took a step Wednesday toward beginning formal negotiations with the Senate over a new farm bill and overwhelmingly voted in favor of including permanent funding for USDA efforts to combat animal diseases.
The fate of the farm bill this year could hinge on whether House and Senate negotiators can find a compromise on tightening work requirements for food stamp recipients in ways that could appeal to at least some Senate Democrats.
When House and Senate negotiators sit down in coming days to start writing the final version of a new farm bill, they will find that many of their sharpest differences will be over how far they should reshape and fund conservation programs.
House Republican leaders are promising to put a bill on the floor this month to address farmer's demand for more workers but the fractious immigration debate in June suggests that passing an ag labor measure won't be easy.
President Donald Trump says he’ll announce his nominee Monday to fill the pivotal Supreme Court vacancy created by the retirement of Anthony Kennedy, and farm groups are eager this week for House and Senate negotiations to begin on a new farm bill.