House Farm Bill Goes Down to Defeat, 195-234

June 20, 2013 08:43 AM
 

Via a special arrangement with Informa Economics, Inc.

Next step: bill could come back to floor next week


NOTE: This column is copyrighted material, therefore reproduction or retransmission is prohibited under U.S. copyright laws.


The House of Representatives today defeated the farm bill (HR 1947) by a vote of 195-234.

The vote count showed very few Democratic members voting for it, but an ample but obviously not enough GOP members voting for it -- 171 with only 24 Democratic yeah votes. In the final vote, 62 Republicans opposed the bill, as did 172 Democratic members, enough to send it to defeat. Rep. Collin Peterson (D-Minn.) clearly did not do his job in getting enough Democratic members to vote for the bill, even though he predicted 50 such votes, as opposed to earlier readings of only 20 to 30 Democratic votes, which proved accurate. Democrats in the chamber cheered when it became clear that the bill would fail.

 

GOP leaders also losers. The rejection of the bill was a shocking defeat not only for House Ag Chairman Frank Lucas (R-Okla.) but also for House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) and Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.), both of whom had spoken in favor of the legislation.

 

Republicans had expected Democrats to deliver 40 votes for the bill. But a source said that at the last moment, Peterson said they could not produce that many because of pressure from Democratic leaders and the White House, which had threatened to veto the bill over the food stamp cuts. Peterson blamed the approval of two amendments for the failure. One of the amendments — backed by Boehner — ended production limits on dairy producers that were a part of the underlying bill. The second, sponsored by Rep. Steve Southerland (R-Fla.), allowed states to require food stamp beneficiaries to either work or look for work. "I told Cantor that Southerland cost us 15 votes," Peterson said. "A lot of people came up to me and said, I'm with you, but I'm out now."

 

The size of the $20.5 billion cuts for food stamps gave the bulk of Democratic members cover to vote no, along with the White House veto threat.

 

The failure of the House to clear the bill vindicates GOP leaders last year who said they did not have the votes to pass a farm bill.

 

House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.), on the House floor, said that going to conference "was the goal and then we would try to participate in a robust discussion with the other side of the capital to see if we could clear some reform measures to a bill and program that is in desperate need of that. What we saw today was a Democratic Leadership in the House that was insistent to undue years and years of bipartisan work on an issue like a farm bill and decide to make it a partisan issue. It is unfortunate. I hope we can work on other issues."

 

House Majority Whip Steny Hoyer (D-Md.), in a floor discussion with Cantor, said he should not try to put the blame on Democrats but instead the partisan nature of the farm bill. His comments centered on a food stamp amendment he and other Democratic members railed against. Hoyer also noted the number of Republicans who opposed the bill.  

 

Democrats suggested that the final straw for them came near the end of the debate when the House adopted an amendment by Steve Southerland (R-Fla.) that would allow states to impose work requirements on food stamp recipients. Hoyer mentioned a "Draconian" amendment, clearly Southerland's SNAP measure. "You turned a bipartisan bill, necessary for our farmers, necessary for our consumers, necessary for the people of America, that many of us would have supported, and you turned it into a partisan bill," Hoyer said.

 

Rory Cooper, a Cantor spokesman, said that Democrats pulled support after the adoption of an amendment sponsored by Southerland, that would have added work requirements to the food stamp program. "The Southerland amendment has been debated, discussed … for weeks. Everybody knew that it was coming, everybody knew that it was going to pass," Cooper said. "Democrats told us clearly after the vote, or right before the vote, that they knew that the Southerland amendment was going to pass and decided at the last minute they were going to withdraw their support."

 

Cooper said, "Unfortunately, Nancy Pelosi and Democratic leadership decided that politics was more important than going to conference and getting things done." He called the Democrats’ decision to vote at the last minute against the bill a "complete collapse of professionalism and maturity on the Democratic Party’s part and unfortunately a slap in the face of the American people."

 

In a briefing with reporters following the vote, Pelosi called the floor proceedings as managed by Republicans "amateur hour," calling them "juvenile" and "unprofessional" and disputing accusations that Democrats fell short of their agreement to deliver 40 votes. "They didn’t get the results and they put the blame on someone else," she said.

 

Lucas told reporters as he left the floor that, at least for him, what should come next is "healing."

 

Meanwhile, Rep. Michael Conaway (R-Texas), chairman of the House Agriculture Committee’s Subcommittee on General Farm Commodities and Risk Management, in a statement, "Democrats torpedoed this important legislation for one reason: because they couldn’t accept a 2 percent cut in food stamps. These Democrats were willing to sacrifice production agriculture and the men and women who feed and clothe our country to prevent modest yet meaningful reforms to this entitlement program. I am disappointed that a discussion on the country’s nutrition and agriculture programs devolved into a spectacle of fear mongering and hyperbole. Our nation’s farmers and ranchers deserve better. Today’s vote represents a missed opportunity for real change in Washington. This bill would have cut nearly $40 billion in spending in 10 years, ensured the sustainability of American agriculture, and made the most extensive reforms to food policy since 1996."

 

Peterson issued the following statement:

 

"The farm bill failed to pass the House today because the House Republicans could not control the extreme right wing of their party. From day one I cautioned my colleagues that to pass a farm bill we would have to work together. Instead, the House adopted a partisan amendment process, playing political games with extreme policies that have no chance of becoming law. This flies in the face of nearly four years of bipartisan work done by the Agriculture Committee. I’ll continue to do everything I can to get a farm bill passed but I have a hard time seeing where we go from here."

 

The next House farm bill step: bill could come back next week. The chief Republican vote-counter, Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy (Calif.), also blamed Democrats and said the bill could come back to the floor next week, with changes. "We can correct it if [Democrats] are not going to help us," he said after the vote.

 

And, GOP leadership, sources say, will not allow another "simple" extension of the 2008 Farm Bill, despite the leverage of so-called "permanent" law hanging over that issue.


 

 

 

FINAL VOTE RESULTS FOR ROLL CALL 286

 

(Republicans in roman; Democrats in italic; Independents underlined)


      H R 1947      RECORDED VOTE      20-Jun-2013      1:54 PM
      QUESTION:  On Passage
      BILL TITLE: Federal Agriculture Reform and Risk Management Act

  Ayes Noes PRES NV
Republican 171 62   1
Democratic 24 172   5
Independent        
TOTALS 195 234   6


---- AYES    195 ---

 

Aderholt
Alexander
Amodei
Bachus
Barber
Barletta
Barr
Barrow (GA)
Barton
Benishek
Bentivolio
Bera (CA)
Bishop (UT)
Black
Blackburn
Boehner
Bonner
Boustany
Braley (IA)
Brooks (AL)
Brooks (IN)
Brownley (CA)
Buchanan
Bucshon
Burgess
Bustos
Calvert
Camp
Campbell
Cantor
Capito
Carter
Cassidy
Chaffetz
Coble
Cole
Collins (NY)
Conaway
Costa
Cramer
Crawford
Crenshaw
Cuellar
Daines
Davis, Rodney
Denham
Dent
DesJarlais
Diaz-Balart
Duffy
Ellmers
Enyart
Farenthold
Farr
Fincher
Fitzpatrick
Fleischmann
Flores
Forbes
Fortenberry
Foxx
Frelinghuysen
Garamendi
Garcia
Gardner
Gerlach
Gibbs
Gibson
Gosar
Granger
Graves (MO)
Griffin (AR)
Griffith (VA)
Grimm
Guthrie
Hall
Hanna
Harper
Harris
Hartzler
Hastings (WA)
Herrera Beutler
Holding
Hudson
Huizenga (MI)
Hultgren
Hunter
Issa
Jenkins
Johnson (OH)
Johnson, Sam
Joyce
Kelly (PA)
King (IA)
King (NY)
Kingston
Kinzinger (IL)
Kline
LaMalfa
Lankford
Latham
Latta
Loebsack
Long
Lucas
Luetkemeyer
Lummis
Marchant
Marino
McCarthy (CA)
McCaul
McHenry
McIntyre
McKeon
McKinley
McMorris Rodgers
McNerney
Meadows
Messer
Mica
Miller (MI)
Mullin
Murphy (FL)
Murphy (PA)
Neugebauer
Noem
Nugent
Nunes
Nunnelee
Olson
Owens
Palazzo
Paulsen
Pearce
Peters (MI)
Peterson
Petri
Poe (TX)
Rahall
Reed
Reichert
Renacci
Ribble
Rice (SC)
Roby
Roe (TN)
Rogers (AL)
Rogers (KY)
Rogers (MI)
Rokita
Rooney
Ros-Lehtinen
Roskam
Ross
Runyan
Schock
Schrader
Scott, Austin
Sessions
Shimkus
Simpson
Sinema
Smith (MO)
Smith (NE)
Smith (TX)
Southerland
Stewart
Stivers
Terry
Thompson (PA)
Thornberry
Tiberi
Tipton
Turner
Upton
Valadao
Vela
Wagner
Walberg
Walden
Walorski
Walz
Weber (TX)
Webster (FL)
Westmoreland
Whitfield
Williams
Wilson (SC)
Wittman
Womack
Woodall
Yoder
Yoho
Young (AK)
Young (IN)

---- NOES    234 ---

 

Amash
Andrews
Bachmann
Bass
Beatty
Becerra
Bilirakis
Bishop (GA)
Bishop (NY)
Blumenauer
Bonamici
Brady (PA)
Brady (TX)
Bridenstine
Broun (GA)
Brown (FL)
Butterfield
Capps
Capuano
Cárdenas
Carney
Carson (IN)
Cartwright
Castor (FL)
Castro (TX)
Chabot
Chu
Cicilline
Clarke
Clay
Cleaver
Clyburn
Coffman
Cohen
Collins (GA)
Connolly
Conyers
Cook
Cooper
Cotton
Courtney
Crowley
Culberson
Cummings
Davis (CA)
Davis, Danny
DeFazio
DeGette
Delaney
DeLauro
DelBene
DeSantis
Deutch
Dingell
Doggett
Doyle
Duckworth
Duncan (SC)
Duncan (TN)
Edwards
Ellison
Engel
Eshoo
Esty
Fattah
Fleming
Foster
Frankel (FL)
Franks (AZ)
Fudge
Gabbard
Gallego
Garrett
Gingrey (GA)
Gohmert
Goodlatte
Gowdy
Graves (GA)
Grayson
Green, Al
Green, Gene
Grijalva
Gutiérrez
Hahn
Hanabusa
Hastings (FL)
Heck (NV)
Heck (WA)
Hensarling
Higgins
Himes
Hinojosa
Holt
Horsford
Hoyer
Huelskamp
Huffman
Hurt
Israel
Jackson Lee
Jeffries
Johnson (GA)
Johnson, E. B.
Jones
Jordan
Kaptur
Keating
Kelly (IL)
Kennedy
Kildee
Kilmer
Kind
Kirkpatrick
Kuster
Labrador
Lamborn
Lance
Langevin
Larson (CT)
Lee (CA)
Levin
Lewis
Lipinski
LoBiondo
Lofgren
Lowenthal
Lowey
Lujan Grisham (NM)
Luján, Ben Ray (NM)
Lynch
Maffei
Maloney, Carolyn
Maloney, Sean
Massie
Matheson
Matsui
McClintock
McCollum
McDermott
McGovern
Meehan
Meeks
Meng
Michaud
Miller (FL)
Miller, George
Moore
Moran
Mulvaney
Nadler
Napolitano
Neal
Negrete McLeod
Nolan
O'Rourke
Pallone
Pascrell
Pastor (AZ)
Payne
Pelosi
Perlmutter
Perry
Peters (CA)
Pingree (ME)
Pittenger
Pitts
Pocan
Polis
Pompeo
Posey
Price (GA)
Price (NC)
Quigley
Radel
Rangel
Richmond
Rigell
Rohrabacher
Rothfus
Roybal-Allard
Royce
Ruiz
Ruppersberger
Rush
Ryan (OH)
Ryan (WI)
Salmon
Sánchez, Linda T.
Sanchez, Loretta
Sanford
Sarbanes
Scalise
Schakowsky
Schiff
Schneider
Schwartz
Schweikert
Scott (VA)
Scott, David
Sensenbrenner
Serrano
Sewell (AL)
Shea-Porter
Sherman
Shuster
Sires
Smith (NJ)
Smith (WA)
Speier
Stockman
Stutzman
Swalwell (CA)
Takano
Thompson (CA)
Thompson (MS)
Tierney
Titus
Tonko
Tsongas
Van Hollen
Vargas
Veasey
Velázquez
Visclosky
Wasserman Schultz
Waters
Watt
Waxman
Welch
Wenstrup
Wilson (FL)
Wolf
Yarmuth
Young (FL)

---- NOT VOTING    6 ---

 

Honda
Larsen (WA)
Markey
McCarthy (NY)
Miller, Gary
Slaughter


NOTE: This column is copyrighted material, therefore reproduction or retransmission is prohibited under U.S. copyright laws.


 

 

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