STATEMENT: The Farm Bill Compromise Represents a “Major Victory for American Families,” says CAP’s Jacob Leibenluft

Washington, D.C. — Following the unveiling of the 2018 Farm Bill text, Jacob Leibenluft, executive vice president for Policy at the Center for American Progress, released the following statement:

Today is a major victory for American families. Legislators in both chambers of Congress rejected the Trump-supported House Farm Bill, which would have taken nutrition assistance away from more than 2 million Americans and prevented more than a quarter million children from receiving automatic access to free school meals. We’re glad negotiators listened to the American people, who overwhelmingly reject the congressional Republican agenda of slashing basic needs such as food and health care to help pay for tax giveaways for millionaires and wealthy corporations. It is a credit to Senate and House Democratic negotiators, led by Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) and Rep. Collin Peterson (D-MN), that millions of families will no longer have to worry about putting food on the table because of threatened cuts to nutrition assistance in the Farm Bill.

We are pleased that the bill preserves bedrock environmental laws that protect farms and forests as well as the critical conservation funding previously threatened in the House’s failed proposal.

But threats to people’s basic access to food are not over yet. Just like with health care, the Trump administration has made it clear that if they can’t take away families’ food legislatively, they will do so unilaterally. The administration’s public charge rule would limit access to nutrition assistance for millions of people in this country legally—and it is already having a chilling effect nationwide. The U.S. Department of Agriculture is also currently considering a rule to make it harder for people who are looking for work or don’t get enough hours at work to access the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).

We must continue to fight against any attempts to take away Americans’ access to food, health care, or a healthy environment as long as President Trump is in office.

For more information or to speak to an expert, contact Julia Cusick at or 202-495-3682.