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Backers of new farm bill say it could help solve budget problems

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More lawmakers on Capitol Hill are seeing a new farm bill as part of the solution to the country's budgetary woes. Until recently, there was concern that Congressional negotiations to avoid the fiscal cliff would push the farm bill and other issues off the table during the lame-duck session.

Now Minnesota Democrat Tim Walz has joined his colleague Collin Peterson in pushing for a new farm bill to be enacted before the current one expires at the end of the year. The Senate passed their version of a farm bill back in June. A House bill that would cut spending by $30 billion over ten years has been bottled up by infighting among Republican leaders.

The need for a new bill charting federal farm policy was a leading topic at the weekend convention of the Minnesota Farmers Union. Business Insider notes, though, that some interests -- such as those who rely on food stamps or who benefit from federal crop subsidies -- might prefer an extension of the status quo to a new bill.

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