Feb. 23 — On Tuesday, the Senate announced that Tom Vilsack will lead the Department of Agriculture and Linda Thomas-Greenfield will be the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations. Vilsack’s second term as USDA secretary, voting 92-7 to approve him, was granted strong bipartisan support by the upper chamber. The Democrats broke with Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., and voted against ratification.The UN Secretary-Special General’s Representative for Afghanistan and head of UNAMA,
Deborah Lyons, said that the best way to protect civilians would be to establish a humanitarian ceasefire, repeating a request repeatedly made by Secretary-General António Guterres and the Security Council.In a statement, Vilsack said, “We have a lot of work ahead of us to contain the pandemic, transform America’s food system, create fairer markets for producers, ensure equity and root out systemic barriers, develop new income opportunities with climate smart practices, increase access to healthy and nutritious food, and make historic investments in infrastructure and clean energy in rural America,
“Members of the Senate voted 78-20 to confirm the appointment of Louisiana’s Thomas-Greenfield, 68, to serve as U.S. delegate to the United Nations, with the rank of U.N. ambassador and U.S. representative. Safety Council, reveals the roll call.America is back when Biden declared her nomination for the post in November, the veteran diplomat said. Multilateralism has returned. Diplomacy has returned. Thomas-Greenfield said she spent more than half of her career focusing on refugee and humanitarian issues during her confirmation hearing before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee,
and it will be one of her many goals at the United Nations.She also said she aims to control China to prevent Beijing from using the global body to accomplish any oppressive objectives. During the confirmation hearing, Thomas-Greenfield was also asked about the equal distribution of COVID-19 vaccines irrespective of wealth, and she said that she intended to discuss it globally.We must definitely re-engage with our allies,”We certainly have to re-engage with our allies,”
“One of the biggest failings of the Trump administration is that they did try to go it alone, and our allies were left kind of holding the bag.”In 1982, she entered the Foreign Service and served in the State Department for over three decades, working in diplomatic positions from Kenya to Pakistan. Between 2008 and 2012, she also served as the U.S. ambassador to Liberia under former Presidents George W. Bush and Obama.
She served as the top US diplomat for African affairs from 2013-2017 and helped to oversee the response to the Ebola epidemic.Linda Thomas-Greenfield, Republican Sen. Bill Cassidy, R-La., has devoted her career to strengthening U.S. ties on the world stage. Said after meeting with her in December in a statement. She will serve our nation as well as the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, hailing from Baker, Louisiana.
Thomas-Greenfield thanked Cassidy for meeting with her in a statement after the meeting.”I’ve always honored my Louisiana roots, no matter where I serve in the world, by adding a Cajun spin — something I call Gumbo diplomacy — and engaging with people in the spirit of building trust and finding common ground,” she said. “I hope to bring that same style of diplomacy to the United Nations.”In the past, Thomas-Greenfield talked about growing up in the segregated South and how she was diplomatically influenced by those experiences.
“Like my mentors, role models and predecessors, I strongly believe diplomacy is an irreplaceable tool in the work of advancing American interests and building a better world.”As the first Black deputy treasury secretary, the Senate is also on track to confirm Wally Adeyemo, having secured bipartisan support at the hearing of the Senate finance committee, The Hill announced. Chairman of the Finance Committee Ron Wyden, D-Ore., known as Adeyemo, “an ideal choice.”Sen. Mike Crapo, R-Idaho,
Ranking Member, noted his vast experience, including work in the private sector, his years at the treasury and the National Economic Council, and his work in trade agreements representing U.S. economic interests. Adeyemo will serve under Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, confirmed as the first woman to serve in the position in late January, if confirmed.At his Senate hearing, Adeyemo discussed issues ranging from trade, sanctions, China, environment and racial disparity, with an emphasis on strong multilateral approaches.