Follow us:

Northwest Voices

Seattle Times letters to the editor

August 6, 2013 at 6:28 AM

Food stamps eliminated from farm bill

Farm bill was a mega-bill

The House of Representatives and House Republican leadership recently took a bold step to separate the farm bill into farm policy and feeding programs (food stamps). [“Budget plans imploding, Congress is heading home,” News, Aug. 2.]

When asked for a reaction to the split, the most common answer in my farm community is “it’s about time.”

We have allowed Congress to fall into a pattern of mega-bills too large for anyone but full-time lobbyists to read and understand. Focusing on issues separately allows for more transparency, better debate and less opportunity for brokered back-scratching.

The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) is a relatively recent addition to the farm bill, and has nothing to do with providing a market for U.S. farmers. It has everything to do with forcing urban congressional attention to farm policy, the ultimate national-security issue. Bluntly, it buys urban votes.

The House Republican leadership understands voter frustration with thousand-page bills that have to be passed before anyone knows what’s in them. Mega-bills are written by special interests and will always be inherently flawed.

Passing a farm bill that focuses on farming is the start of a great trend.

Sue Lani Madsen, Edwall

 

Comments | More in Federal government, Politics | Topics: Congress, farm bill, food stamps

COMMENTS

No personal attacks or insults, no hate speech, no profanity. Please keep the conversation civil and help us moderate this thread by reporting any abuse. See our Commenting FAQ.



The opinions expressed in reader comments are those of the author only, and do not reflect the opinions of The Seattle Times.


Advertising
The Seattle Times

The door is closed, but it's not locked.

Take a minute to subscribe and continue to enjoy The Seattle Times for as little as 99 cents a week.

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Subscriber login ►
The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription upgrade.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. For unlimited seattletimes.com access, please upgrade your digital subscription.

Call customer service at 1.800.542.0820 for assistance with your upgrade or questions about your subscriber status.

The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. Subscribe now for unlimited access!

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Activate Subscriber Account ►