December 9, 2020 Responds to Biden’s Selection of Marcia Fudge for HUD & Tom Vilsack for USDA Secretary

Washington, DC — President-elect Joe Biden has chosen Ohio Representative Marcia Fudge for Secretary of Housing and Urban Development and Tom Vilsack for Secretary of Agriculture, a position he served in under former President Obama. Associate Director of Policy Natalie Mebane gave the following response:

“Marcia Fudge is the leadership we need in Biden’s cabinet. As Secretary of Housing and Urban Development, Fudge will be critical if Biden is to fulfill his climate mandate and commitment to prioritizing the demands of Black, Indigenous, and communities of color. However, Fudge was our ideal candidate for agriculture secretary, due to her career fighting for workers’ rights and climate action.

“In stark contrast, Tom Vilsack’s appointment to Secretary of Agriculture is the exact opposite of what an Administration focused on “building back better” needs. In order to ensure a livable future, we need leadership that will fight for struggling family farmers, sustainable farming, and national food security, not corporate agriculture giants. Vilsack spent his time as Secretary of Agriculture under Obama sweet-talking Big Ag, directly harming Black farmers, and furthering the USDA’s discriminatory history, including by overseeing the firing of Shirley Sherrod. His appointment is disappointing and does not meet our criteria for Biden’s cabinet.