What: All Issues : Corporate Subsidies : Agriculture : HR 2646. Farm Bill/Final Passage of a Bill to Reauthorize a Host of Important Federal Agricultural Programs. (2002 house Roll Call 123)
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HR 2646. Farm Bill/Final Passage of a Bill to Reauthorize a Host of Important Federal Agricultural Programs.
house Roll Call 123     May 02, 2002
Progressive Position:
Nay
Progressive Result:
Loss

The farm bill is a huge conglomeration of federal agriculture programs that must be reauthorized every few years. By 2002 reauthorization was overdue, so members of both parties struggled hard to put together a package. The bill they settled on took a step back from the free-market solutions favored by Republicans in the reauthorization of 1996. It also retreated from some Progressive elements in the Senate's version of the bill. The Senate bill gave cash supports to farmers who participated in conservation programs, capped the total subsidies a single farm could receive in a given year at a relatively low $275,000, and thwarted corporate efforts to consolidate animal raising and slaughtering into a single business. The final version of the bill removed the slaughtering restrictions and many of the conservation programs and increased the subsidy cap to $360,000. It also reinstated food stamps for legal immigrants and a wide range of price supports, and authorized a new $1 billion dairy subsidy for threeand- a-half years. Progressives, however, could not agree with the other changes-especially the higher subsidy cap, which they felt helped large farms at taxpayer expense-and voted "no." Even so, the bill passed by a wide margin, 280-141.

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