For Ag Secretary Nominee Sonny Perdue, It’s “Hurry Up And Wait”

It’s been 11 weeks since President Donald Trump nominated former Governor Sonny Perdue to lead the federal Agriculture Department.  As the AJC points out in today’s article, the former Governor was the last nominee appointed to fill Trump’s cabinet.  Delays, including a paperwork mishap, have pushed back the confirmation vote by the US Senate, and the temptation of Senate Republicans pressing the nuclear button to push Neil Gorsuch’s nomination through could delay Perdue’s confirmation even further.

Perdue has received praise from both sides of the aisle, so his confirmation shouldn’t be all that controversial (a seemingly rare occurrence in the Trump administration), but supporters of Perdue are gettting a bit anxious with delay after delay.  From an excerpt of a letter penned by the top Republican and Democrat on the House Agricultural Committee to the Senate as posted on the AJC:

“Earlier this month, highly pathogenic avian influenza was discovered in a commercial poultry flock along the Mississippi Flyway.  In the southern high plains, wildfires have burned more than two million acres, killed thousands of livestock, and tragically took human life.  The U.S. Department of Agriculture plays the lead role in responding to these and many other serious situations that are unfolding, and the Department absolutely must have someone at the helm.”

So, it’s “hurry up and wait” for former Governor Perdue unless a confirmation vote is called at the last moment before the Senate goes into recess.

Something that strikes me with this issue is that US Senator David Perdue is 1.) the former Governor’s cousin and 2.) the apparent pail-carrier in the US Senate for the Trump administration.  I would think that the former Governor’s cousin who is *his* US Senator would be able to strike a deal to get this deal done weeks ago.

It makes me wonder what sort of influence Georgia’s junior senator has in his own chamber if he’s having trouble closing the deal on getting a seemingly non-controversial cabinet nominee from his own state (and family) through the confirmation process.

Perhaps working the #Outsider angle and grandstanding doesn’t endear yourself to building relationships with and sway the opinions of your fellow senators to get things done.

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