According to senior transition officials, President-elect Donald J. Trump has chosen former Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue to lead the Department of Agriculture.
Perdue is a 70-year-old veterinarian who served as a state senator for 10 years beginning in 1991. He switched political parties from Democratic to Republican in 1998. In 2003, he became Georgia’s first Republican governor since Reconstruction and was reelected serving from 2003 to 2011.
According to Reuters, agricultural interests are pleased with Trump’s choice of Perdue. Farmers are concerned that Trump’s criticism of China could lead to deteriorating trade relations and put agricultural exports at risk:
An influential Chinese state-run newspaper warned this week that U.S. agricultural imports and U.S. aircraft manufacturer Boeing Co. could be targets for retaliation in any trade war ushered in by Trump.
But environmental groups opposed the nominee preferring someone more interested in conservation than the production of food.