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NMPF Presses for a U.S. Chief Ag Negotiator

October 6, 2022

NMPF joined with USDEC and the Corn Refiners Association to spearhead a Sept. 20 letter from 105 agricultural organizations and companies urging immediate Senate action to install Doug McKalip as the Chief U.S. Agricultural Negotiator.

As the Administration forges ahead with new, albeit limited, trade discussions on the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework and with Taiwan, the United States has been left without a confirmed Agricultural Ambassador at the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative. The letter to Senate Leaders Schumer (D-NY) and McConnell (R-KY) highlights McKalip’s long track record as an advocate for free trade, noting that he “would bring to the position decades of experience representing the interest of U.S. agriculture, having served in numerous leadership positions at USDA and the White House.”

Following a bipartisan 27-0 vote to move McKalip’s nomination forward during a Senate Finance Committee executive session Sept. 7, the process stalled due to a hold placed on McKalip’s nomination that prevented an immediate vote by the full Senate. NMPF continues to advocate to Congress that agriculture cannot afford further delays and must have a full seat at the table during the myriad of ongoing and planned trade conversations.