Thursday, May 22, 2008

Farm Bill Will Need Re-Vote

The 2008 farm bill will apparently need a re-vote due to an unexplainable procedural clerical error.

Apparently, the copy of the farm bill sent to the President didn't include a trade title for food aid and the school lunch program. Rep. Roy Blunt, who supported the farm bill, released a memo Thursday that's critical of the Democratic leadership for missing the error.

"It appears the Democrat Leadership was informed by the Office of the Law Revision Counsel and the Committee on Agriculture that the bill sent to and vetoed by the President was erroneous PRIOR to consideration of the veto override," Blunt wrote in a memo.

"Despite this knowledge and despite requests from staff from the Republican Leader’s office, the Democrat Leadership proceeded with the veto override of a bill they knew was not the bill passed by both Houses of Congress," he said.

An Agribusiness newspaper quotes Blunt explaining the do-over:

Rep. Roy Blunt, (R., Mo.), who unlike Boehner has supported the farm bill, told reporters the requirement for a re-vote "is not an anti-farm bill position. If we're going to pass law, we must pass law that will stand any legal challenge. You don't want every conservation easement, every food bank distribution, every payment under the farm bill to be subject to any taxpayer going to court and saying 'this bill never passed Congress.'" "If you're going to have a farm bill, you have to have a farm bill that is unassailable in court," Blunt emphasized.

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