The current bill expires at the end of this month and House Speaker John Boehner acknowledged this week that the full House won’t take up the bill recommended by its agriculture committee. That means as farmers work through harvest and begin to think about next year, they don’t know what’s coming. Chris Clayton is an agriculture policy editor for the news service DTN Progressive Farmer.
"It just causes a lot of angst when the bill is stalled and particularly when you go into this situation, this fiscal cliff situation," Clayton says.
He says that’s partly why so many agriculture groups came together this fall in a lobbying coalition called Farm Bill Now — the changes on the table are more appealing than a complete unknown.
"There’s a high risk that you go into the lame duck and there are steeper cuts that are put on the floor with amendments to offset some of the tax cuts, to offset some of the tax cuts, to offset some of the spending cuts in defense or other areas," Clayton says.