dglobalnews.com Senate expected to confirm Perdue as agriculture secretary
Published: Wed, April 26, 2017
National | By Glenda Ortiz

Senate expected to confirm Perdue as agriculture secretary

"As secretary, I will champion the concerns of farmers, ranchers, foresters and producers, and will work tirelessly to solve the issues facing our farm families", Perdue said.

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.

"I've known and worked with Sonny Perdue for many years and I know what a dedicated public servant he is", United Fresh Director Bill Brim of Lewis Taylor Farms in Tipton, Georgia, said. He served as Georgia's governor from 2003 to 2011. To calm them down, he assured them he will advocate for rural America and he promised to reach out to Democrats.

Democrats surely think so. As the task force begins its work, we want to ensure a constant line of communication between ASA and other farm organizations and the task force so that this group can function as effectively and successfully as possible. The Southern businessman-unrelated to and unaffiliated with the owners of food and poultry companies Perdue and Perdue Farms-takes charge of the USDA as the agency faces deep cuts despite an agricultural downturn. I think this is further evidence that this President, Donald J. Trump, is building an outstanding Cabinet with which to change the direction of our country, to get this economy going, to put America back to work again, to re-engage internationally, and to develop a fair and level playing field with the rest of the world economically.

President Trump signed an executive order Tuesday telling the Agriculture Department to identify and eliminate potentially unnecessary regulations that "hurt farmers and rural communities". David Perdue, R-Ga., voted present. Pat Roberts, the chairman of the Senate Agriculture Committee, said Perdue will help facilitate recovery in small American towns.

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His main task over the coming year will be working with Congress and coordinating his department's input on the next five-year farm bill.

At his hearing, he pledged to help senators sustain popular crop insurance programmes and fix problems with government dairy programmes.

In a statement before the vote, Tiffany Finck-Haynes of the group Friends of the Earth said Perdue's "long-standing ties to major agribusiness and chemical companies" made him "out of touch with American values". Perdue is expected to be sworn in as the 31st secretary of agriculture on Tuesday. He said he plans to be guided by four principles: maximizing the ability of farmers and agribusiness to produce, create jobs and sell their goods; prioritize customer service in the USDA; ensure a safe and secure USA food supply, and stewardship of the land.

"He understands that the Agriculture Department has a profound impact on almost every community across the country and certainly every family", said U.S. Sen.

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