News from governors past and present.
It’s official, former Gov. Tom Vilsack is your new U.S. secretary of agriculture. From Reuters:
The U.S. Senate confirmed former Iowa Gov. Tom Vilsack as U.S. agriculture secretary on Tuesday, a job he plans to use to promote renewable energy including biofuels and put healthier food in America’s school meals.
Vilsack was among five of President Obama’s cabinet nominees to be approved on a unanimous vote a couple of hours after Obama took office.
With 100,000 employees, the Agriculture Department has a portfolio that ranges from antihunger programs like food stamps to running the national forests, paying crop subsidies, promoting farm exports, aiding rural economic development and directing agricultural research.
Also in the green is Gov. Chet Culver, who has $1.5 million in his campaign accounts. AP reports:
A new financial disclosure report shows that Gov. Chet Culver has raised nearly $1.5 million in his bid for a second term.
The report filed with the Iowa Ethics and Campaign Disclosure Board on Monday shows that Culver raised more than $1 million last year to start this year with $1.49 million in the bank.
Culver has not formally announced he will seek a second term but has left no doubt about his intentions.
Nearly $1.5 million is hardly a frightening sum for a would-be challenger in this day and age, even at nearly two years out. But the Big Lug has only begun to raise big bucks, especially from unions expecting to have a good year at the Statehouse.