President Obama knows that agribusiness cannot be trusted with the regulatory powers of government. On the campaign trail in 2007, he promised: We'll tell ConAgra that it's not the Department of Agribusiness. It's the Department of Agriculture. We're going to put the people's interests ahead of the special interests.
But, starting with his choice for USDA Secretary, the pro-biotech former governor of Iowa, Tom Vilsack, President Obama has let Monsanto, Dupont and the other pesticide and genetic engineering companies know they'll have plenty of friends and supporters within his administration.
President Obama has taken his team of food and farming leaders directly from the biotech companies and their lobbying, research, and philanthropic arms:
former Monsanto Vice President, is now the FDA Deputy Commissioner for Foods.
former director of the Monsanto-funded Danforth Plant Science Center, is now the director of the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture.
Vice President of theMonsanto and Dupont-fundedpesticide-promoting lobbying group, CropLife, is now the Agriculture Negotiator for the US Trade Representative.
former agricultural-development director for the pro-biotech Gates Foundation (a frequent Monsanto partner), served as Obama's USDA Under Secretary for Research Education and Economics and Chief Scientist and is now head of USAID.
who, as President Obama's Solicitor General, took Monsanto's side against organic farmers in the Roundup Ready alfalfa case, is now on the Supreme Court.
corporate counsel to DuPont, has been nominated by President Obama to serve as General Counsel for the USDA.