Vilsack reported to be Biden’s choice for Ag Secretary
President-elect Joe Biden reportedly plans to name former U.S. Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack to the job. After eight years in the Obama administration leading the USDA, Vilsack became President of the U.S Dairy Export Council. His name is the latest to surface as a contender for Ag Secretary.
American Farm Bureau President Zippy Duvall told Brownfield, before the reports about Vilsack, Farm Bureau wants an Ag Secretary with either a farming background or “deep knowledge” of agriculture.
National Farmers Union President Rob Larew says Vilsack has the necessary qualifications and experience “to steer the agency through these turbulent times.”
The National Black Farmers Association calls Vilsack a big improvement over Secretary Sonny Perdue but says too little was done during his previous tenure to address a legacy of discrimination against black farmers.
Friends of the Earth says they are disappointed Biden would select an agribusiness lobbyist with a tarnished record on civil rights, consolidation, and the environment.
Senate Ag Committee member Chuck Grassley of Iowa says he would support Vilsack’s nomination.