‘Political gotcha’: Lawmakers spar over food, fuel package

Source: By Marc Heller, E&E News • Posted: Tuesday, June 14, 2022

Reps. David Scott (D-Ga.) and Glenn Thompson (R-Pa.).

(Left to right) House Agriculture Chair David Scott (D-Ga.) and ranking member Glenn Thompson (R-Pa.) during a Rules Committee hearing yesterday. Francis Chung/E&E News

 Democrats and Republicans sparred yesterday over a wide-ranging agriculture bill set to reach the House floor this week, with one Republican calling it a “big political gotcha.”

The package is part of a Democratic effort in the House to lower rising food and fuel costs.

At a House Rules Committee meeting to set the parameters for floor debate, Agriculture Chair David Scott (D-Ga.) cast the legislation as a bipartisan exercise.

The White House also stepped in, saying in a statement that it supports the bill.

Republicans, however, complained about the inclusion of a provision that would increase oversight of the meatpacking industry, though their objections were overridden.

But the top Republican on the Agriculture Committee, Rep. Glenn Thompson of Pennsylvania, said the bill on E15 — the goal of which he also supports — had bypassed the normal committee process and was never considered in the Energy and Commerce Committee. Rep. Rodney Davis (R-Ill.) noted his own support for expanded E15 but disparaged the wider bill.