Confirmed…Tom Vilsack returns to the USDA

Confirmed…Tom Vilsack returns to the USDA
February 23rd, 2021 | slittlefield

Reactions continue to come in from agriculture groups and those in Washington after the U.S. Senate today confirmed Tom Vilsack as the 32nd Secretary of Agriculture. He was the 30th Secretary of Agriculture under President Obama, testifying at his Senate confirmation hearing this month on Groundhog Day…

Tom Vilsack during his confirmation hearing earlier this month

U.S. Senators Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.), Chairwoman of the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry, and John Boozman (R-Ark.), Ranking Member, today announced that the U.S. Senate voted 92-7 to confirm Tom Vilsack to serve as U.S. Secretary of Agriculture.

“After an overwhelmingly bipartisan vote, Secretary Vilsack can now get to work and help our farmers, families, and rural communities,” said Chairwoman Stabenow. “I look forward to partnering with him to address the challenges for our farmers and rural communities related to the COVID-19 pandemic, feed American families in need, and create new markets while curbing the climate crisis.”

“Secretary Vilsack has a track record of working with Congress, and today’s strong bipartisan vote expresses the Senate’s confidence that he will continue that approach moving forward. Congress and the administration must work together to address the many pressing matters facing the ag community and rural America, particularly the need to provide swift relief to those affected by the ongoing pandemic. Building a good relationship with Secretary Vilsack will help us achieve our mutual goals while ensuring that the needs of farmers and ranchers are always at the forefront of USDA’s agenda,” said Ranking Member Boozman.

House Agriculture Committee Chairman David Scott issued the following statement in response to the Senate approving Tom Vilsack to lead the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA):

“I applaud the Senate for approving Secretary Tom Vilsack to head the Department of Agriculture for a second time. I am excited about working with him and his staff to ensure that USDA works to support our farmers in an equitable way. I look forward to Secretary Vilsack joining us at our House Agriculture Committee hearings over the course of his tenure to provide critical updates on the important work of USDA.”

The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) today congratulated Tom Vilsack on his Senate confirmation to serve as Secretary of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). NCGA President John Linder made the following statement.

“NCGA congratulates Secretary Vilsack on his confirmation. Corn growers appreciated his comments in support of biofuels, along with the positive role he sees agriculture playing in addressing climate change, during his confirmation hearing. 

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 U.S. Senator Roger Marshall, M.D. issued the following statement after voting to confirm Tom Vilsack as the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture.

“Secretary Tom Vilsack’s background as a governor and of course as the former Secretary of Agriculture make him a good fit to lead the USDA during these unprecedented times for our farmers and ranchers,” said Senator Marshall. “While we may have our differences on a handful of issues, I look forward to working hand-in-hand with Secretary Vilsack and the entire USDA team as we help Kansas producers navigate COVID-19 and as we look toward crafting the next farm bill.”

Senator Marshall’s comments before the vote in the senate

NMPF President and CEO Jim Mulhern:
“All of U.S. agriculture has an effective advocate in Tom Vilsack, and the nation will be well-served by his return to public service leading the U.S. Department of Agriculture. 
“We in the dairy community who have had the opportunity to work with him have seen first-hand his deep passion for rural America and his commitment to advancing agriculture and the communities it serves, from farmers and food-sector workers to the consumers and businesses that depend on USDA to meet their needs every day, in every way. That’s especially important in light of today’s pressing challenges, which include a farm economy battered by the COVID-19 pandemic; climate change, sustainability and the environment; nutrition and food insecurity; international trade policies that limit U.S. exports; labor shortages that are worsening with time; and the legacies of societal injustice that need to be addressed.

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