U.S. House passes debt ceiling agreement

On a vote of 314 – 117, the U.S. House has passed the agreement in principle to raise the debt ceiling and the Senate is now considering the bill.

Ag lobbyist Tom Sell with Combest, Sell and Associates tells Brownfield he is expecting the Senate to support the agreement before next week’s deadline.

“No one is totally happy, but everyone agrees compromise is necessary for the greater good.” 

The bill includes a temporary expansion of work requirements for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. The updates require able bodied people to volunteer for 20 hours each week if they aren’t working and raise the age for work requirements to 54-years-old. It would also allow veterans, the homeless and others to qualify for food stamps.

Sell says there has been some questions about the cost and these updated SNAP requirements will cost more money.

“But I think for members of Congress, they see this as a philosophical debate about what’s the best thing for people on food stamps.”

Sell says he is optimistic these changes to SNAP will make the farm bill discussions easier for lawmakers and allow more focus on other aspects of the bill, including the farm safety net.

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