Senate passes Coburn amendment closing USDA payment loophole for millionaires

The amendment, attached to the farm bill currently under consideration, was approved in a vote of 63-36. Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) authored the amendment.

Just before the vote on that amendment, the Senate approved two of four other measures. One amendment, introduced by Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) and approved by voice vote, would issue national diet guidelines for mothers with children up to 2 years old. 

The other amendment the Senate approved was by Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.). Merkley's amendment would give crop insurance by the Federal Crop Insurance Corporation to organic crop producers. The insurance, under that amendment, is the same as for non-organic crops.

The Senate defeated two amendments by Coburn and Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.). Coburn's other amendment would have cut funding to the market access program in order to prohibit spending on "television shows, wine tastings, animal spa products, and cat or dog food." DeMint's amendment would stop the Secretary of Agriculture from increasing grants to entities that provide broadband access in rural areas.

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