Texas Congressman Joaquin Castro [TX-20] released this statement following the failure of the 2013 Farm Bill (H.R. 1947) in the U.S. House of Representatives:
"Today's vote is yet another example of Congress' inability to get to work on behalf of the American people. House Republicans attempted to hijack the Farm Bill and use American families who depend on food and nutrition programs during times of economic hardship as a straw man to an extreme agenda. House Republicans approved a $20.5 billion cut to food programs, distracting from the goal of the bill -- which is to update the programs that our agriculture sector depends on to thrive. In Texas, farmers and ranchers, who have supported our economy for generations, deserve a farm bill that invests in our agriculture sector without harming our families.
These cuts are particularly harmful to Texas families. There are almost 5 million Texans who often struggle to put food on the table. While the average SNAP benefit is modest, with Texans receiving $1.38 per person, per meal, the cuts included in this bill will result in nearly 200,000 Texans forced off the program, eliminating over 480 million meals.
This legislation unfairly targeted the neediest in our nation, including 2 million Texas children, to tout immediate savings that do little to help our farmers. I look forward to working with my colleagues on a Farm Bill that protects our American economy and puts the American people first."