Crawford Delivers Opening Remarks during House Consideration of Farm Bill

Washington – Today, Congressman Rick Crawford (R-AR) delivered the following comments in support of H.R. 1947, the Federal Agriculture Reform and Risk Management (FARRM) Act of 2013.

   Mr. Speaker,

   I rise in support of H.R. 1947.

First I would like to thank Chairman Lucas and Ranking Member Peterson for their outstanding work in crafting the 2013 Farm Bill. I would especially like to thank the farmers and ranchers across rural America for their patience as we worked through this long, difficult process.

Mr. Speaker, the bill before us today is the product of our extensive outreach to farmers, ranchers, and stakeholders across the entire Country. I believe that the most essential aspect of writing any Farm Bill is the critical input we receive from our rural constituents. The Agriculture Committee made this possible through holding a series of Farm Bill field hearings in nearly every region of the country, allowing producers to contribute to the Farm Bill process by having their voices heard.

Last year, I had the opportunity to host the Agriculture Committee in my hometown of Jonesboro where all types of producers from Arkansas and the Midsouth region had the chance to testify. They shared with the Committee the challenges they face in the modern agriculture economy, and provided suggestions about how the Farm Bill can be tailored to reflect their unique risks in the marketplace. This feedback was critical in helping us craft policy that meets the needs of producers in Arkansas.

After hearing from stakeholders across the Country, it was remarkable to hear time and again that ag producers are willing to do their part to reduce the deficit. This willingness allowed the Agriculture Committee to craft a Farm Bill that saves nearly $40 billion. This was no easy task, and the Committee had to make very tough choices. But I believe we were able to fairly balance the needs of our producers with the need to pay down our debt.

The final product is a bipartisan Farm Bill that saves taxpayers’ money, reduces deficit spending, and repeals outdated government programs while reforming, streamlining, and consolidating others. Whether it’s through the elimination of Direct Payments, the consolidation of conservation programs, or eliminating abuse in the Food Stamp program, every part of this bill contributes fairly to deficit reduction.


I proudly support the 2013 Farm Bill, and encourage my Colleagues to do the same.


With that I yield back.

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