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Farm Bill Deadline Approaches

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President George Bush yesterday suggested that Congress give up trying to pass a new Farm Bill this year. He says he's unhappy with how they want to pay for it. The deadline for reaching a compromise between the House, Senate, and administration is this Friday—it was already extended by a week.

Without an agreement, the Farm Bill passed in 2002 will remain in effect for another year—and some provisions will revert back to early 20th century standards. This has farmers in Illinois and across the country concerned—but it's also distressing the hungry and advocates trying to help them. About two thirds of the $280 billion package would go toward funding nutrition programs, including food stamps.

Diane Doherty is the executive director of the Illinois Hunger Coalition. She spoke with Eight Forty-Eight's Richard Steele. Doherty says she would be disappointed if the new Farm Bill doesn't get passed—or if it gets vetoed by the president.

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