Democrat Chuck Schumer held a phone conference with reporters Wednesday to urge House Speaker John Boehner to bring the farm bill to a vote.
"Y'know it's enough already," Schumer said. "It's been expired since Sept. 30 and he just ought to put the bill on the floor."
The Senate passed its version of a 5-year, $500 billion farm bill last summer. But conservative GOP members have held up a vote, saying the bill doesn't make deep enough cuts to food stamps and farm subsidies.
If no action is taken by January, a 1949 law would take effect that could double milk prices. Schumer says that would be bad for consumers and for New York's dairy farmers.
"Dairy farmers need market stability and a sudden and temporary increase in price will disrupt markets and push consumers away from purchasing dairy products," he said.
New York's junior Senator Kirsten Gillibrand also spoke to the need to protect dairy farmers yesterday. In a press release, she urged Congress to keep a bipartisan provision in any final farm bill. It would require hearings on the federal milk pricing system, which most experts agree is arcane and needs to be revised.