Senate Agriculture Committee Chairman Blanche Lincoln, D-Ark., thinks it is time for government to pay at least one of its bills. Friday, Lincoln called for an emergency designation to help provide compensation owed to African American farmers who have been victims of discrimination.
In a letter to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., Lincoln said an emergency designation would ensure Congress reached the May funding deadline called for in a settlement between USDA and African American farmers. This settlement provides compensation for discrimination in the Farm Service Agency lending program.
"It's imperative that justice and fairness is done by providing the necessary $1.25 billion in funding to bring the long standing Pigford II Class to settlement closure," Lincoln said. "Failure to do so would continue to add emotional pain to the many people who rightly deserve that justice no longer be delayed."