WASHINGTON — Congressional agreement on a stalled farm bill seemed increasingly out of reach on Wednesday, as a few hundred farmers gathered near the Capitol to press for its passage. They were greeted by an unusually bipartisan group of lawmakers pushing for action in the House, where Republican leaders have declined to pursue legislation. [...]The Senate passed a five-year farm bill earlier this summer and has been waiting for the House to act. The House Agriculture Committee passed its own version of the bill, but Speaker John Boehner has refused to take up either bill for purely political reasons. He'd have to pass the Senate's version of the bill with Democrats, and he doesn't want to give them that opportunity. The House version doesn't contain enough cuts for most of the House freshman, though it decimates the food stamp program, and it couldn't garner enough Democratic votes to pass. So, because he doesn't want his members to have to take a difficult vote, he refuses to do anything at all.
Senator Jerry Moran, Republican of Kansas [...] spoke, chiding members of his own party in the House for refusing to bring their own committee’s farm bill to the floor. “Don’t sit on the sidelines waiting for something to happen,” he said. [...]
Should the current law expire at the end of the month, direct payments to farmers would still continue at $5 billion a year, and the food stamp program would continue through other spending bills. But nearly 40 other programs would not be financed after the 2012 fiscal year.
Worst Congress and worst Speaker of the House. Ever.