WASHINGTON — U.S. Sen. Mark R. Warner (D-VA) released the below statement after the Senate voted 87-11 to confirm Sonny Perdue as Secretary of Agriculture:
“I want to congratulate Gov. Perdue on his confirmation as Secretary of Agriculture. Virginia farmers and agricultural producers across the U.S. depend heavily on trade, and I am encouraged by Mr. Perdue’s commitment to promote U.S. agricultural products abroad and maintain relationships with our key trading partners. I look forward to working with Secretary Perdue to explore ways in which we can expand international markets for Virginia agricultural and forest products.
"In addition, I am pleased by Mr. Perdue’s pledge to work to reform the H-2A visa program, which brings lawful and needed work to American farms. Virginia agricultural producers rely heavily on this program, so I hope improvements can be made to ensure that our farmers and ranchers have the labor force needed to be successful. I also look forward to partnering with Secretary Perdue to eliminate so-called ‘food desert’ and expand healthy food options for low-income individuals and families located in rural communities and inner-cities.”