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Providing for Further Consideration of H.R. 1947, Federal Agriculture Reform and Risk Management Act of 2013

Floor Speech

By:
Date:
Location: Washington, DC

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Ms. KAPTUR. I thank Ranking Member McGovern and commend him for his work on this important rule.

I rise in opposition to this rule, but, frankly, I'm relieved to finally debate a farm bill in this country. This past year and a half has been marked by far too much uncertainty in our agriculture industry as a result of Republican leaders here refusing to even consider a farm bill in the last Congress. That has hurt economic growth in this country from coast to coast.

American agriculture is responsible for 1 in 12 jobs in our country, and it's vital to give confidence to the market and to give certainty to our agricultural enterprises that we move a bill forward. Thank goodness the other body did it and we are compelled to do it here.

But this bill cuts $20.5 billion in nutrition assistance that will cut over 2 million low-income people, starting with senior citizens in this country and with children who won't get school meals anymore. I don't know what the gentleman from Texas is talking about. I invited him to Ohio before, and I hope he accepts my invitation. Simply, these cuts are unconscionable.

Shockingly, the bill also has zero funding for the energy title. When American energy security is at stake and gas prices are hovering around $4 a gallon, to not invest in that is simply backwards thinking.

I urge my colleagues to vote against the rule, and hopefully we can improve the bill as it comes to the floor for a final vote.

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