Beef Buzz News
NCBA's Ethan Lane says the Price Discovery and Transparency Act Passing Committee was the Easy PartWed, 29 Jun 2022 11:25:54 CDT
The Price Discovery and Transparency Act for the cattle markets passed the Senate Agriculture committee with relative ease this last week. Although it was not a recorded vote, Senator John Boozman of Arkansas and Senator Dr. Roger Marshall of Kansas asked to be counted as no votes.
Senior Farm and Ranch Broadcaster, Ron Hays, visits with the Vice President of Government Affairs at the National Cattlemen's Beef Association, Ethan Lane about the next steps now that the bill has passed the Senate Agriculture Committee.
Passing the Committee, Lane says, is the easy part. It is going to be more difficult to receive floor time in order to have the bill passed and possibly voted on, Lane added.
"There is going to be a lot of work before the U.S. Senate between now and August recess, and then when they get back from August recess, they are going to have to figure out how to keep the government funded, and of course, we have got a little election in November that might be kind of impactful as well," Lane said.
Lane said he always reminds people that the most valuable commodity in Washington is Senate floor time, and that is certainly the case at the moment.
"We will see what happens from here, but as I said, I think there is going to be a lot of non-ag committee senators voicing some concerns about seeing this package move forward," Lane said.
The million-dollar question, Lane said is if there will be enough time between now and November to get anything accomplished.
"I don't think anybody believes they will get through the full appropriations process this season," Lane said. "That just seems unreasonable given the time constraints and political environment."
We are starting to see a little bit of elevated dialogue around the farm bill, Lane said, but we won't really see that pick up until next year. It will be interesting to see what they are able to get done in the next few months, he added.
"We are still in a highly partisan environment here in Washington and that is never a good environment to try to get things done quickly under time pressure," Lane said.
With much at stake for control of congress and more, this is the time to be engaged this political season.
"This is crunch time," Lane said. "We are seeing some real opportunities for pickups and congressional districts around the country there are some really ag-friendly candidates out there on the campaign trail that are talking to voters, cattle producers, and hearing inputs from the industry."
It is always exciting, Lane said, to think we are going to have some more champions for agriculture and for the cattle business headed to Washington.
"It is going to be interesting to see just how much of a wave this election really is," Lane said. "I've been in politics for a long time and I don't know that I've ever seen a time with conditions quite as ripe for a pretty substantial flip in power up on Capitol Hill, but there is a long time until election day, so how these members on both sides of the aisle conduct themselves between now and then is going to be important."
Lane said cattle producers need to take advantage of any opportunity to voice their opinions to lawmakers.
If the House flips to the Republican side, Lane said they will have the opportunity to help with the regulatory agenda issues.
"There is very little that congress is going to be able to do other than maybe exercise the purse strings on the regulatory agenda we are seeing from the Biden Administration, whether that be the return of ESA rulemakings or the return of National Environmental Policy Act regulations that are not favorable to cattle producers."
In the event of a House and/or a Senate flip, Lane said those individuals will have the opportunity to start working on their own bills and apply some pressure.
"Nobody is better at that than Mitch McConnel," Lane said.
It will be interesting to see what McConnel is able to do if he does regain control of the gavel on the senate side, Lane said, but it is a safe bet that Republicans will gain control of the house.
"We saw it in 2010 with the tea party wave," Lane said. "You will get all kinds. You'll get members that are coming to Washington to promote themselves, you'll get members that are coming to Washington to get something done, and you'll get members who didn't think they were going to win and who take a little while to figure out what they want to do there."
It will be a big job educating new members and helping them understand what the cattle industry needs and figuring out just what this congress does want to do once they take their seats in January, Lane said, but it will look very different.
Click the LISTEN BAR below to listen to Ron Hays and Ethan Lane talk about what is next for the Price Discovery and Transparency Act.
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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