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Governor Branstad to speak at USDA Agricultural Outlook Forum

LISTEN: World of Agriculture 2-23-17

Governor Terry Branstad will speak at USDA’s annual Agricultural Outlook Forum taking place Thursday and Friday in Arlington, Virginia. This is the 93rd year USDA has hosted the Ag Outlook Forum.

“Governor Branstad is thrilled to talk with USDA about the importance of resetting the federal-state relationship.  After the 8 years we just had with the Obama Administration, there is no doubt that the Ag economy has taken a hit from the dismal policies we saw come down (Waters of the U.S., low RFS vollumes, etc.),” Ben Hammes, Communications Director for the Governor says.

Governor Branstad is President Trump’s nominee for Ambassador to China. He is a distinguished speaker at the forum. Branstad spoke with me about trade and China back in January.

“I hope the fact that I have this long time relationship with the leadership in China will help me to try to explain some of the changing taking place in this country in terms of our policy. But also, look for opportunities to make it a win win situation by increasing American exports and reducing the balance of payment deficit we have with China. At the same time, would like to continue to see there economy grow.”

Branstad says he will likely have to be the mediator as President Trump has not said some nice things about China.

“When he visited Iowa, I always used to say ‘Don’t say anything bad about China we do business with them’. Yet, he is a businessman and what I have tried to explain to the Chinese is I understand why he is upset. He feels the United States has not done a very good job at negotiating these deals. The result has been we have lost a lot of American jobs and we really need to put America first”.

At the forum, Branstad will speak on his experience as Governor of Iowa for over 22 years. Then he will focus briefly on his new role as U.S. Ambassador and how trade and increasing our Ag exports.

A confirmation hearing for Branstad has not yet been announced.