House Republicans mull splitting farm bill
Removing food stamps from bill viewed as way to help it pass
A month after the farm bill was defeated, House Republican leaders are considering splitting it into two separate measures -- one for farm programs and one for food stamps.
It's an attempt to gather support from conservatives who voted against the $100 billion-a-year farm bill, and critics say it could lead to bigger cuts in both farm subsidies and the domestic food aid, according to reports.
Republicans discussed the strategy in a Tuesday caucus meeting, with House Agriculture Committee Chairman Frank Lucas, R-Okla., saying for the first time that he would go along with a split bill if leaders could deliver the votes. Republicans were assessing support for the idea, and a spokesman for House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, said no decisions had been made on how to revive the bill.
The House rejected the farm bill in June by a vote of 234-195 after some in the GOP complained that the legislation did not cut enough from food stamps. Democrats said the 3 percent cut in food stamps was too much.