Johanns explains farm bill vote

Published online: Jun 18, 2013
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Nebraska Sen. Mike Johanns voted for the Senate farm bill last week, but admits he wasn't too thrilled about it.

Johanns thinks the bill is too costly and doesn't go far enough in modernizing farm policy or focusing nutrition programs. But, in the end, Johanns concluded that it's better than no farm bill at all.

"I voted for it because I believe we need a long-term farm bill to provide a degree of certainty to our farmers and ranchers," Johanns says.

"I also believe that we just can't drag our feed on this," he says. "We need to get it done. We've got a deadline facing us September 30th-so we need to move a bill."

In May, Johanns voted against the farm bill reported out of the Senate Ag Committee. At that time, he said the bill represented a significant step backward for ag policy because it retained and even increased target prices. He called it "a step back towards 1980's farm policy."