70
      Sunday
      79 / 61
      Monday
      86 / 63
      Tuesday
      88 / 65

      Obama to sign farm bill during visit to East Lansing on Friday

      Presidnet Obama will sign the Farm Bill Friday in East Lansing.

      The White House says that President Barack Obama will sign the farm bill at Michigan State University on Friday during a previously announced visit to East Lansing.

      The White House first announced the trip last Friday. It confirmed Tuesday that he will sign the farm bill during the visit.

      Michigan Democrat Debbie Stabenow chairs the U.S. Senate Agriculture Committee and led the fight for congressional passage of the farm bill.

      The sweeping $100-billion-a-year measure won Senate approval Tuesday on a 68-32 vote after House passage last week. The bulk of its cost is for the food stamp program, which aids 1 in 7 Americans.

      The bill provides a financial cushion for farmers who face unpredictable weather and market conditions. It also provides subsidies for rural communities and environmentally-sensitive land. Recipients include Southern peanut growers, Midwest corn farm ers and the maple syrup industry in the Northeast.

      The nation's 47 million food stamp recipients will also be covered. The overall cost of the program will be cut by $800 million a year, or around 1 percent. That's a compromise. House Republicans pushed through a bill in September that would have made a cut to food stamps that was five times more than the eventual cut.

      The White House says Obama will give a speech on the importance of the farm bill to the U.S. economy.