NCBA Sets Its Expectations Low for Congress as the Tide of Power Shifts to Democrats' ControlTue, 20 Nov 2018 10:28:35 CST
The American public has gotten a taste of Lame Duck here after the November midterm elections. This week, though, it is Dead Week in Washington and little is going on in the halls of Congress as lawmakers are back home with their families for the Thanksgiving holiday. However, they will return to DC next week to finish out this Lame Duck session. According to Colin Woodall of the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, who spoke recently with Radio Oklahoma Ag Network Farm Director Ron Hays, we should not expect to see much happen during this time period, legislatively. Although, he is hopeful that a few key pieces of legislation might be pushed through while Republicans retain control of the House of Representatives.
“If history is any indicator, it will be a race to the finish line by Republicans to get as much done as possible before they are returned to the minority. For us in particular, that focus in on the Farm Bill,” Woodall said. “Now, the good news is that Mr. (Collin) Peterson (current Ranking Member on the House Ag Committee and incoming Chairman) has also said he wants to get it done - that he doesn’t want to rewrite the Farm Bill when he becomes Chairman in January. That’s good news for everybody in agriculture, especially for us because he has been supportive of our FMD vaccine bank. So, we’re optimistic we can get that done.”
In addition to the Farm Bill, Woodall is hopeful that Republicans can arrive at the finish line with an Appropriations bill as well. He explains that this would also be helpful to the livestock industry as the bill currently being considered includes language that would resolve issues with the ELD Mandate for livestock haulers as well as the question of regulatory authority regarding lab-grown protein or “fake meat” as NCBA refers to it. Longer term though, Woodall says once the Democrats do take power in the House, he expects there will be little that is actually accomplished as the House will revert focus to government oversight and the Senate will take a defensive stance to block the Democrats’ agenda.
“I believe this Congress is going to be all about gridlock. I don’t believe they’re going to be able to move much if any legislation,” he said. “But, a Congress that doesn’t do much is a good Congress. We don’t need a bunch of new bills coming at us.”
Listen to NCBA’s Woodall share his outlook on what Congress will be able to accomplish during Lame Duck and beyond with Hays, on today’s Beef Buzz.
The Beef Buzz is a regular feature heard on radio stations around the region on the Radio Oklahoma Network and is a regular audio feature found on this website as well. Click on the LISTEN BAR below for today's show and check out our archives for older Beef Buzz shows covering the gamut of the beef cattle industry today.
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