Washington, D.C. Update

February 3, 2023

House Agriculture Republicans announce subcommittee chairs

On Thursday, Rep. GT Thompson (R-PA), Chairman of the House Agriculture Committee, announced subcommittee jurisdiction and chairs for the 118th Congress. Rep. Austin Scott (R-GA) will serve as the Vice Chair of the Committee. The subcommittees and subcommittee chairs for this congressional session are as follows:

  • Subcommittee on General Farm Commodities, Risk Management, and Credit – Rep. Austin Scott (R-GA)
  • Subcommittee on Forestry – Rep. Doug LaMalfa (R-CA)
  • Subcommittee on Conservation, Research, and Biotechnology – Rep. Jim Baird (R-IN)
  • Subcommittee on Nutrition, Foreign Agriculture, and Horticulture – Rep. Brad Finstad (R-MN)
  • Subcommittee on Livestock, Dairy, and Poultry – Rep. Tracey Mann (R-KS)
  • Subcommittee on Commodity Markets, Digital Assets, and Rural Development Rep. Dusty Johnson (R-SD)

House Democrats announce additions to Agriculture Committee

On January 26, Rep. Hakeem Jeffries (D-MD) announced the Democratic Steering and Policy Committee had made committee recommendations for new members of the House Democratic Caucus. New Democratic members joining the House Ag Committee include Reps. Yadira Caraveo (D-CO), Andrea Salinas (D-OR), Marie Gluesenkamp Perez (D-WA), Don Davis (D-NC), Jill Tokuda (D-HI), Nikki Budzinski (D-IL), Eric Sorensen (D-IL), Gabe Vasquez (D-NM), Jasmine Crockett (D-TX), Jonathan Jackson (D-IL).

Senate Republicans announce committee assignments

On Wednesday, Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) announced the Senate Republican Conference had made committee recommendations for the 118th Congress. Republican membership in the Agriculture Committee will remain the same from the previous Congress. Last week, Democrats announced freshmen Sens. John Fetterman (D-PA) and Peter Welch (D-VT) would be joining the Agriculture Committee for the 118th Congress.

House and Senate Republicans challenge EPA’s WOTUS rule

On Thursday, Republican members of both chambers introduced identical resolutions of disapproval under the Congressional Review Act to challenge the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) recently released rule regulating waters of the United States (WOTUS). If enacted, the resolution would terminate the rulemaking. In the Senate, the resolution was introduced by Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV) and cosponsored by all 48 other members of the Senate Republican Conference. In the House, the resolution was introduced by Reps. Sam Graves (R-MO) and David Rouzer (R-NC) and was cosponsored by 152 other members of the House Republican Caucus. The text of the resolution can be found here. Last week, 194 members of the House Republican Caucus signed a letter calling on the EPA and the USACE to rescind the WOTUS regulations.

Senate Agriculture Committee holds a hearing on trade and horticulture

On Wednesday, the Senate Agriculture Committee held a hearing on the trade and horticulture titles of the farm bill. During the hearing, Sen. John Boozman (R-AR) asked the Department of Agriculture (USDA) Undersecretary for Trade and Foreign Agricultural Affairs Alexis Taylor what the Department was doing for rice farmers impacted by India’s World Trade Organization violations. Undersecretary Taylor responded USDA was engaging with India in multilateral forums and taking multiple approaches to rectify the problem. Sen. Tommy Tuberville (R-AL) asked Undersecretary Taylor about the Market Access and Foreign Market Development Programs and the Undersecretary responded both programs have shown success and USDA is satisfied with how the programs are running.

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