Congressman Bobby Schilling (IL-17) today released the following statement after voting in favor of H.R. 6233, the Supplemental Agricultural Disaster Assistance Act:
"Advancing the Farm Bill remains a priority of farmers and producers in the 17th District of Illinois, and it remains a priority of mine," Schilling said. "But it is important that we act now, in a bipartisan fashion, to help rural America and livestock producers during this very difficult drought."
On July 12, Schilling helped advance the Farm Bill through the House Ag Committee by a bipartisan vote of 35-11. He also spearheaded a letter to House leadership signed by 78 of his colleagues from both sides of the aisle urging a vote on the Farm Bill before the August district work period. Schilling last week joined members of the Illinois Congressional Delegation and Governor Pat Quinn in requesting a Secretarial Disaster Declaration from Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack to help Illinois' agriculture communities being impacted by the drought currently gripping much of the United States. The United States Department of Agriculture only yesterday designated 66 counties as primary natural disaster areas.
"It seems that folks only hear of the arguing, bickering, and -- arguably the worst of all -- deadline crunching in Washington," Schilling said. "Yesterday, a fellow member of the House said that Congress works like this: "Crisis. Cliff. Deadline. Extension.' It seems to me that's just not how the best system of government in the world is supposed to work.
"We have worked in a bipartisan way to achieve results this Congress, but there are a number of important legislative items to get done, including the Farm Bill. We have an opportunity to provide certainty, govern responsibly, and pass the Farm Bill, giving our farmers and producers the tools they need to continue feeding the people of America."
In September 2011, Schilling introduced H.Con.Res. 82, a resolution that would prohibit the Senate or the House of Representatives from adjourning for any period three days or longer unless that chamber has passed a budget for the current fiscal year in addition to all 12 of its regular appropriations bills. He also is a cosponsor of H.R. 3643, the No Budget, No Pay Act, that would ensure that Members of Congress wouldn't get paid if Congress doesn't fulfill its responsibility of passing a budget. Schilling also voted against adjourning the House for the August district work period.