(Harrisonville, MO) -- Members of the U.S. House of Representatives are watching closely as their counterparts in the Senate begin to move through the 2013 farm bill.
Before they can even begin debate, however, Senators are currently divided over how to move forward. Many Republicans want extended debate on the legislation, allowing potentially hundreds of amendments to the legislation, while many Democrats - including Senate leadership - are hoping to limit the debate.
Rep. Vicky Hartzler, R-Harrisonville, said she feels Senators should limit their debate to agriculture issues, only.
"I think it should be limited to the scope of the bill," she said in an interview. "I don't think it is appropriate to add a bill on some other topic to an agriculture bill. If it has to do with agriculture and is germane, I think it should be a part of the discussion."
Hartzler, whose family farms in western Missouri, said she is supportive of the provision in the legislation that ends direct payments to farmers - often called "farm subsidies" - in favor of increased spending on crop insurance.
"All of us on the committee, certainly on the Republican side, have agreed it is time for direct payments to go," she said.
The entire legislation, currently before the Senate, cuts $24 billion over the next decade to a total of $969 billion. The price of crop insurance for the federal government will rise to $9 billion, while it will save $5 billion from spending on direct payments.