Senate confirms Vilsack as ag secretary

Senate confirms Vilsack as ag secretary
Feb 24, 2021

Subscribe to our Newsletters

Only seven senators voted against the returning secretary

By Diego Flammini 
Staff Writer 
Farms.com 

Tom Vilsack is officially the head of the United States Department of Agriculture for a second time following Tuesday’s Senate proceedings. 

Senators voted 92 to 7 in favor of Vilsack, who is ready to begin his important USDA work. 

“We’re going to be a USDA that represents and serves all Americans,” Vilsack said following his confirmation, the Associated Press reported. “I am optimistic about the future and believe our brightest days are ahead.” 

Farm groups from different sectors officially welcomed Vilsack back to the post he held during the Obama administration. 

“Secretary Vilsack has consistently shown a willingness to listen to corn growers, to understand the issues they face on their farms, and we’ve welcomed his outreach to agriculture,” John Linder, president of the National Corn Growers Association, said in a statement. “Corn growers are looking forward to working together to build long-term demand for our product, mitigate the impact of climate change, seek new markets around the globe, and continue to feed and fuel the world.” 

The dairy sector also looks forward to working with the returning ag secretary. 

Vilsack’s experience in the sector and in government will serve him well as he navigates a farm economy affected by COVID-19, trade and labor issues, said Jim Mulhern, president of the National Milk Producers Federation. 

“Tom Vilsack’s experience and leadership will be crucial to meeting these challenges, and more,” he said in a statement. “We congratulate him on his confirmation and pledge to do our best to contribute to his successful service.” 

Vilsack didn’t receive unanimous support as seven Senators voted against his confirmation. 

Among them was Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), who wanted to see someone lead the USDA who would take a hard stance against consolidation within the industry. 

“I like Tom and I’ve known him for years. I think we need somebody a little bit more vigorous in terms of protecting family farms and taking on corporate agriculture,” Sanders told reporters, The Hill reported. “I think he’ll be fine, but not as strong as I would like." 

The other Senators to vote against Vilsack were Sens. Cruz (R-Texas), Hawley (R-Mo.), Paul (R-Ky.), Rubio (R-Fla.), Scott (R-Fla.) and Sullivan (R-Alaska). 

Rubio voted against Vilsack because of the ag secretary’s willingness to build relationshipswith Cuba. 

“There is no crop, nor trade agreement, between Cuba’s rulers and the U.S. that would stop the regime’s egregious abuses from continuing,” Rubio said in a Feb. 23 statement. “Our next Secretary of Agriculture should uphold American values rather than appeasing international foes.” 

“There is no crop, nor trade agreement, between Cuba’s rulers and the U.S. that would stop the regime’s egregious abuses from continuing,” Rubio said in a Feb. 23 statement. “Our next Secretary of Agriculture should uphold American values rather than appeasing international foes.” 

 



Trending Video

Know your Kubota: Z231KW-42 Air Filter Cleaning and Replacement

Video: Know your Kubota: Z231KW-42 Air Filter Cleaning and Replacement


Know your Kubota: Z231KW-42 Air Filter Cleaning and Replacement Get to know your Kubota! Learn how to replace and clean the air filter on the Z231KW-42.

 

Comments


Your email address will not be published