AgriTalk: No New Farm Bill Without Immigration First

June 6, 2018 09:17 AM
Before the Farm Bill can pass the house something has to be done about immigration. That is where Rep. Bob Goodlatte comes in. Guests also include Maria Zieba with NPPC, and Tanner Ehmke of CoBank.

Members of the so-called Freedom Caucus made it very clear at the House Farm Bill’s first vote that they had no intentions on supporting the bill without action on immigration. Their decision to spurn the bill is ultimately what kept it from passing.

Now members of the House Judiciary Committee are ready to put their immigration legislation on the block. Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) joined AgriTalk Host Chip Flory for Tuesday’s show, to talk about the Securing America’s Future Act (SAFA) that he has helped author.

To the average farmer the most important aspect of any immigration legislation will be farm labor, and how/if it will make that labor any easier to come by

“This bill takes it away from the Department of Labor and moves it to the Department of Agriculture,” said Goodlatte. “[Under] the current law you have to provide housing and transportation, under the new law you do not. Under the current law you have certify with the local employment commission that you can’t find U.S. citizens, under the new law the farmer would self-certify to the Department of Agriculture.”

Goodlatte also laid out several other changes with the proposed legislation. He said that SAFA, or some other form of immigration legislation, should see a vote by the end of the week of June 20.

Also joining the program on Tuesday was Tanner Ehmke of Cobank, and Maria Zieba, Deputy Director of International Affairs for the National Pork Producers Council. Both discussed with Flory implications of steel and aluminum tariffs that will be imposed on Canada, Mexico, and China.


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