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Farm Bill Goes Down to Defeat in House

June 24, 2013

The U.S. House of Representatives has rejected a $500 million farm bill because of bipartisan opposition to cuts in food stamps.

The bill was defeated Thursday on a vote of 234 to 195, just a week after the Senate passed its own version of the bill.

House Democrats objected to the bill's $2 billion cut in food stamps, which poor people use in supermarkets to help pay for groceries. They said millions of Americans would lose those benefits.

Republicans who voted against the bill said the cuts were not deep enough.

Thursday's defeat means Congress is highly unlikely to reconsider another farm bill before the end of the fiscal year.

The Senate's version of the bill included continuation of an international food aid program and expanded crop insurance to help U.S. farmers survive when grain prices fall.

Farm bills are typically authorized in five-year increments, but an agreement on this latest installation of the legislation has eluded Congress.

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