So how did lawmakers vote on Thursday night? Here's a breakdown:
Final tally: 217 to 210.
How many Republicans voted for the bill?: 217.
How many Republicans voted against the bill?: 15.
How many Democrats voted against the bill?: 195.
How many Democrats voted for the bill?: 0.
How many lawmakers didn't vote?: 6.
How many seats are vacant?: 2.
Who were the Republicans that voted against the bill?: Reps. Peter King (N.Y.), Shelley Moore Capito (W. Va.), Chris Gibson (N.Y.), Walter Jones (N.C.), Richard Hanna (N.Y.), Chris Smith (N.J.), Frank LoBiondo (N.J.), Don Young (Alaska), Frank Wolf (Va.), Mike Fitzpatrick (Pa.), Jeff Fortenberry (Neb.), Michael Grimm (N.Y.), Patrick Meehan (Pa.), Gary Miller (Calif.), David Valadao (Calif.).
Votes Notes: House Democratic aides predicted that as many as 20 Republicans might vote against the nutrition bill because the proposed cuts were too steep. But Democrats came up five votes short in part because five of their own didn't show up -- one of them, Carolyn McCarthy (N.Y.) is recovering from lung cancer surgery. If they had, the closer margin might have compelled more Republicans to vote no.
Most of the GOP "no" votes hail from the suburbs of major metropolitan areas: Fitzpatrick and Meehan come from districts around Philadelphia; King and Grimm are from the New York City area; and LoBiondo and Smith represent areas across the Hudson River in the Garden State. Wolf represents a Northern Virginia district buttressed by Democratic districts in a fast-growing section of the Old Dominion.
There are several House Republicans running for Senate seats next year, but only one -- Capito -- voted against the bill. She told reporters as late as Wednesday that she was still mulling what to do and admitted that the bill would adversely affect West Virginians.
A win is a win, no matter the margin, and the successful vote is a significant victory for House Majority Leader Eric I. Cantor (R-Va.), who broke with four decades of congressional precedence and decided to split apart the farm bill this summer. He gambled big, and won a narrow victory.
Follow Ed O'Keefe on Twitter: @edatpost