According to the latest reports out of Washington, House Agriculture Committee Chairman Frank Lucas is urging his colleagues to approve a limited ag disaster aid bill when it comes up for a vote on Thursday.
Facing certain defeat, Republicans pulled their one-year farm bill extension from the House docket late Tuesday in favor of a narrower 383 million dollar disaster aid package to address the immediate needs of drought-stricken livestock producers.
Even if it is approved by the House, the fate of the aid bill in the Senate is uncertain. Senate Agriculture Committee Chair Debbie Stabenow told the Hill that the Senate will not take up the pared down drought bill this week, in the hope of keeping the pressure on the House to allow a five-year farm bill to go to conference.
Lucas says his priority remains to get a five-year farm bill on the books. He says he continues to work with House leadership and Ranking Member Collin Peterson to determine the best path forward for the farm bill.