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Fresh farm bill pressure

May 15, 2024
Illustration of a danger sign with an ear of corn for an exclamation point.

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

The fight over IRA money in the farm bill is taking center stage again.

Why it matters: Republicans have long sought to repurpose the IRA's climate and conservation funds, a sticking point that has the potential to derail all sorts of bipartisan priorities.

State of play: Both ag committees released outlines of their farm bill proposals this month.

  • The House is proposing to reallocate unspent IRA money and remove the law's "climate sideboards to restore the locally led nature of conservation programs."
  • We still haven't seen bill text from the House, but it could come any day now.

What's next: A group of House Democrats told reporters Wednesday they're gearing up to fight that effort as the House moves to the markup phase.

  • Asked whether the dispute over IRA money could derail the entire farm bill, Senate Ag Ranking Member John Boozman simply said, "Yes."
  • "I would like to move those conservation dollars into the farm bill," he said. "I just want it to be in actual practices that our farmers use."

Go deeper: Read Axios' scoop from last week on how the House wants to deal with aviation fuel in the farm bill.

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