Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Vilsack for Secretary of Agriculture

CQ: Vilsack Frontrunner for Secretary of Ag

Not what he was hoping for 20 or so months ago, and not even number two on that Clinton-Vilsack ticket, but hey. Congressional Quarterly:
Former Iowa Gov. Tom Vilsack has emerged as the frontrunner for the post of Agriculture secretary in the Obama administration, according to people close to the presidential transition team.

Read that as "Team Obama is floatin' this balloon." Seems to be rising:
Vilsack, a Democrat, has a powerful booster in fellow Iowan Tom Harkin, chairman of the Senate committee that will hold confirmation hearings for the next secretary.

Vilsack also got a thumbs-up from Iowa’s senior senator, Republican Charles E. Grassley .

“In administrations that I’ve known, it’s always been beneficial for our state to have another Iowan closer to the seat of power,” Grassley said in a statement.

Careful, Chuck. You're in need of an opponent in a couple years, our state is trending blue, and a cabinet post can be a nice stepping stone. Just ask the last Sec of Ag, Mike Johanns, who they now call Senator-elect.

In any case it keeps TV's name out there and his options open. Vilsack got on Team Obama late but was seen a lot in the late days, doing the job of counter-message whenever the Republican ticket hit the state. He did similar work in his native western Pennsylvania, where Team McCain bet the ranch and lost. We journalists are such suckers for that balance thing, and you'd always get a Vilsack soundbite tacked onto the end of the McCain story.

1 comment:

jtizdal said...

While Vilsack would be nice, I really hope Patty Judge gets a good look.