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Politics

Democrats Blaming Southerland For Farm Bill Failure

Democrats are blaming Florida Congressman Steve Southerland for the failure of a bill renewing subsidies to farmers and food vouchers for the poor.

Southerland’s amendment requiring recipients to show their looking for work, helped tank the bill when it came up for a full House vote. In a conference call, Jackson County Commissioner Jeremy Branch accused Southerland of making a political statement in a typically, a-political bill:

“This is obviously a Tea Party issue," said Branch, who lives in Southerland's district. "Tight scrutiny of aid to the poor is obviously a platform of the Tea Party, and Southerland was a Tea Party Candidate. I’m quite sure he feels he owes his seat to the Tea Party and what they stand for.”    

The work requirement is also a part of Florida’s unemployment system, a change championed by Governor Rick Scott.  Some Congressional Democrats also withheld their support for the Farm Bill because it cuts financing for the food stamp program.