Black farmers have received a commitment from Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) that the Senate will vote Wednesday on a $1.15 billion settlement resolving long-standing discrimination claims.
Reid offered the commitment in a meeting Wednesday with John Boyd Jr., president of the National Black Farmers Association, according to Boyd. He said would move a measure to appropriate funds for the settlement the black farmers reached with the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Boyd said the settlement would come up for a vote as part of an amendment that would expand Medicare benefits to the small-business loan bill. Boyd had a noon meeting with Reid.
“I’m calling the Republicans to vote for it today!” Boyd said in an e-mail to The Hill. “A vote against the bill is a vote against the black farmers.”
Funds for the settlement have passed the House already. But deficit worries and complaints by Republicans over chamber procedure have stalled the agreement in the Senate.
An e-mail to Reid’s press office asking about the vote was not immediately returned.