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GOP leaders face major challenges in turning farm bill floor win into policy achievement.

House Republican leaders flexed their muscles to push a farm bill to passage this week, but they face major challenges in turning that political victory into a policy achievement.

The bill was approved in a narrow 216-208 vote after GOP leaders bowed to conservative demands and stripped food stamp funding from the legislation. GOP leaders said they would deal with a separate food stamp bill down the road.

But farm groups, including corn and wheat lobbyists who reluctantly supported moving the farm subsidies-only bill in the end, said splitting the bill will make passing a bipartisan House-Senate farm bill harder, and could result in Congress simply extending current law.

Such a result wouldn’t please conservatives, since extending the law won’t cut the deficit.