Senate confirms Sonny Perdue as agriculture secretary

25 April, 2017, 13:01 | Author: Evan Mason

"In part to address that concern, the president is expected to sign an executive order on Tuesday promoting agriculture and 'rural prosperity, ' and will hold a round table discussion with some farmers at the White House".

The Senate voted to confirm Mr Perdue 87-11.

The agricultural sector, which heavily relies on exports, has also watched warily as President Trump's administration has moved ahead with an overhaul of USA trade policy, including withdrawing from the Trans-Pacific Partnership, which farm groups generally had backed. Robert Lighthizer, Trump's nominee for US trade representative, and Alexander Acosta, nominated to head the Labor Department, still await confirmation.

"A native of Perry, Georgia, Perdue helped craft the state's agriculture policy in the 1990s as a Democratic state senator from Houston County before switching to the GOP in 1998".

As ag secretary, Gov.

"Secretary Perdue knows agriculture; I think he'll do well as agriculture secretary", Maschhoff says.

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"Secretary Perdue is a long-time friend to me and farmers across Georgia, and soon to the millions of men and women across our country who feed and clothe our nation".

Perdue had received the support of ranking Senate Agriculture Committee Democrat Debbie Stabenow of MI.

The former governor of Georgia succeeds Tom Vilsack, who led the U.S. Department of Agriculture for the past eight years and who endorsed Perdue as his successor once the former Georgia governor was nominated by President Trump. "Agriculture remains Georgia's number one industry, and our state is fortunate to have him in this important leadership position". But historically, Politico noted Monday that Perdue is the first agriculture secretary nominee in 31 years to receive even a single no vote from the floor.

Mr. Perdue also will step into a growing trade dispute with Canada over USA -produced milk used to make cheese, which some US producers have argued is unfairly shut out of the Canadian market. "Agriculture is in my heart, and I look forward to being a fighter for our nation's producers".

Also, Congress must reach agreement by the end of the week on a plan to fund the government through the end of the fiscal year on September 30 or face a government shutdown. During this critical time, the importance of trade for the agriculture industry can not be overstated.

The National Association of Conservation Districts added their congratulations, noting that Perdue is the third agriculture secretary in the history of USDA to live and work on a farm as an adult.

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