Pryor, Lincoln Launch On-Line Petition Drive for Disaster Relief Support

MAY 17, 2006 - Posted at 3:13 p.m. CST

WASHINGTON - Senators Mark Pryor and Blanche Lincoln today are asking Arkansans to support local farmers by persuading President Bush to back down on his threat to veto an emergency appropriations bill if it includes any disaster relief for our farmers.  They want Arkansans to sign on-line petition on their websites, or, which they will deliver to the president and to the speaker of the house who declared the disaster package "dead on arrival."

Pryor and Lincoln said the Senate passed long-awaited emergency disaster assistance in April to help farmers recover from higher input costs as part of the Fiscal Year 2006 emergency supplemental bill, but the House did not include similar language in its version of the legislation.  A Senate-House conference committee will negotiate the final bill, and the Arkansas senators are concerned the disaster relief provisions of the bill will not survive with a looming veto threat from the president and opposition to disaster relief from certain House members.

"The president's veto threat tells me he either isn't hearing the plight of our farmers or he doesn't care about their livelihood.  That's why I'm asking Arkansans to join me in sending a very loud and clear message that he needs to support our farmers in their time of need," Pryor said.