Thursday, January 22, 2009

Reminder to Foodies: Advise and Consent

The "foodies" (i.e., organic, locavore, sustainable advocates) have been proposing names, first for Secretary of Agriculture and now for posts within ag. I found the following excerpt from a Government Executive piece on USDA appointment to be a reminder of where the power really is:

Meanwhile, a House Agriculture Committee member and a key Senate aide said they believe Chuck Hassebrook, executive director for the Center for Rural Affairs, is a top candidate for deputy secretary.

Other Capitol Hill sources said a Hassebrook nomination would be highly controversial and might not make it out of the Senate Agriculture Committee because he has been such a strong critic of farm programs. Hassebrook is an advocate of strict farm program payment limits and favors more spending on nonagricultural rural development.

Lesson to the Alice Waters of the world: you don't have the power. To get it, you need an "Emily's List" and get your hands dirty, not cleaning vegetables but in the day to day politicking that elects Reps and Senators.

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