Area Congressmen Jordan, Davidson won’t back farm bill

Lawmakers want action on immigration first.

Rep. Jim Jordan says he has no intention of voting for a farm bill until House Republicans have fulfilled campaign pledges to tackle immigration reform.

“I ain’t going to vote for a farm bill until we figure out what we are going to do on immigration, plain and simple,” Jordan said during a press availability with House conservatives Tuesday. He said House Republicans have “plenty of time” to pass the farm bill, which expires in September.

Jordan, R–Urbana, and Rep. Warren Davidson, R–Troy, voted no on the farm bill last week because of frustration that House Republicans had not yet offered an immigration bill fulfilling the promises President Donald Trump made during the 2016 election. The farm bill failed to pass the House without their votes and the votes of other members of the conservative House Freedom Caucus.

Jordan said Tuesday he actually liked parts of the farm bill – including new work requirements for food stamps – but was spurred to act in response to a petition signed by most House Democrats and at least 20 House GOP moderates to force votes on more moderate immigration measures. Among the measures Democrats would like to see are provisions preserving a federal program protecting young undocumented immigrants who came to the U.S. children from being deported. All four of Ohio’s Democratic U.S. House members have signed the petition, but no Ohio Republican has. As of Tuesday afternoon, the petition was just 17 signatures short of forcing a vote. If the petition gets the necessary 218 votes, the House could begin voting on the more moderate immigration measures on June 25.

RELATED: Dayton ranks among fastest-growing cities for immigrants

Among those who signed the petition was Rep. Joyce Beatty, a Jefferson Township Democrat who said she is trying to force a vote because “Americans are demanding action.”

“I believe in keeping families together, and think that the Trump Administration’s ongoing effort to tear families apart is the wrong way to fix our broken immigration system,” she said.

Jordan said the fact that Democrats and centrist Republicans are so close to forcing a vote has motivated conservatives to push Ryan to push a bill that would include, among other provisions, a border wall.

“We have to get a resolution,” Jordan said, saying he and other conservatives are pushing a measure “consistent with the mandate of the 2016 elections.”

About the Author