Now that the Republican convention is history the Democrats take their turn next week. Former Iowa governor and U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack has emerged in recent days as a leading candidate for Hillary Clinton’s vice-presidential running mate. Her choice is expected to be announced this weekend.
Another Iowan feels if the Vilsack selection happens, it may not actually do Ag much good. The longtime Obama Ag Secretary has strong political credentials and is friends of the Clintons but Republican Senator Chuck Grassley sees little benefit from a Clinton-Vilsack ticket.
“If she wanted to have a Vilsack have an impact in agriculture it would be better to leave him as Secretary of Agriculture because I’ve said he’s done a pretty good job as Secretary,” Grassley said. “As Vice President he would be involved in everything and probably deemphasize is role in agriculture”
Grassley says the same of Mike Pence, who strongly defended Hoosier farmers as a former Indiana congressman, especially on trade, versus Donald Trump’s anti-trade deal stance today. But on regulatory overreach Grassley says there is a contrast in the two tickets.
“Hillary Clinton is going to go down the same road, maybe even more vigorously than Obama did, and if Trump is President he said he is going to retract a lot of the things that Obama’s put on”
Grassley says agriculture will be pushing hard again in a new congress and administration to repeal the EPA’s Waters of the U.S. Rule.
“For agriculture, if we can get Waters of the U.S. repealed by executive action of the President or Congress doing it through the congressional veto, which we tried and can’t do when Obama doesn’t agree to it, then that’s a pretty clear cut difference between the two candidates”
Grassley says he hopes both Clinton and Trump will have an advisory group on agriculture. He’s pushing for Ag input in the Trump camp. While farmers are just a fraction of the population, Grassley says food is a national security issue.
Source: NAFB News Service