Today, the House will vote on legislation (H.R. 1837) introduced by Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA) that will help end water shortages on Central Valley farms created by failed Big Government policies, over-regulation, and seemingly endless lawsuits. An editorial in today’s Wall Street Journal notes that “more than 10,000 farm jobs have been lost as a result” of droughts caused by government regulations that restrict the flow of water to Central Valley farms, “and regional unemployment stands at about 15 percent.” Speaker Boehner spoke in support of the bill on the House floor today, saying it will prevent those who are “abusing the law” for unintended purposes from destroying even more American jobs. Here’s an excerpt of Speaker Boehner’s remarks:
“We’ve got a group of people in California who don’t like production agriculture, think that using water to grow crops to feed the world is environmentally dangerous. And they’re using a law for – the endangered species law – for what I would describe as an unintended purpose. They’re using the law to shut down production agriculture that they don’t like and abusing a law that was created by this Congress. It is wrong, and it should not stand.
“Secondly, here we are in a country where the American people are asking ‘where are the jobs?’ The president says he’s doing everything he can to help create more jobs in America. Well, here’s a situation where we’ve got tens of thousands of farmers and those who work on those farms in the Central Valley of California being denied the use of their own land, being denied the labor to feed their own families, because someone is abusing the law. This is a good bill, and it ought to pass.”
H.R. 1837 passed the House Natural Resources Committee with bipartisan support, and is expected to do so in the full House – but that has not stopped President Obama from threatening to veto the bill. If the president is serious about putting more Americans back to work, he should not only reconsider his opposition to H.R. 1837, but also call on Senate Democrats to act on the nearly 30 other bipartisan, House-passed jobs bills they are blocking. The president says “we can’t wait,” and Rep. Nunes’ bill is exactly the type of common ground legislation the American people – including thousands of struggling farmers and workers in Central Valley - shouldn’t have to wait for. Learn more about the Republican Plan for America’s Job Creators at jobs.gop.gov, and following the progress of the House-passed jobs bills delayed in the Democratic-led Senate here.