Iowa’s democrat Senator, Tom Harkin, says Republicans are filibustering to delay a Senate vote on a farm relief package. Harkin, as chairman of the Senate Ag Committee, is pushing a nearly seven-and-a-half billion dollar package. Republicans in the House and President Bush favor a smaller, five-and-a-half billion dollar bill. Harkin says the difference is quite real for many states. For Iowa he says it’s 91 million dollars.Harkin says time’s running out to get the deal done before Congress leaves for its August recess. Harkin says all the major farm groups, including the Farm Bureau, the Farmer’s Union and the leading commodity groups, favor his approach rather than the G-O-P’s. Harkin says the need for assistance in small towns is “critical.”Even if the Senate were to approve Harkin’s Ag bill, it would have to clear a conference committee of House and Senate members, too.
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