April 19,2001

Grassley Comment on the AG Trade Representative

Sen. Chuck Grassley made the following comment about the appointment today of Allen F.Johnson to serve as U.S. Chief Agricultural Negotiator in the Office of the U.S. TradeRepresentative.

Sen. Grassley is the only working family farmer in the U.S. Senate and chairman of theSenate Committee on Finance, where all trade legislation is considered. Al Johnson is a native ofLong Grove, Iowa. He was an agriculture policy advisor to Sen. Grassley during the 1980s and iscurrently president of the National Oilseed Processors Association. Al Johnson’s nomination todaywas supported by leading national farm organizations.

Here is Sen. Grassley’s comment:

“Agriculture makes an enormous and valuable contribution as U.S. trade’s third largestexporter. The agriculture trade issues are complex and difficult. They need particular attention, andthat’s why I worked to help create the special ag negotiator position in the U.S. trade representative’soffice.

“The appointment of Al Johnson today shows that President Bush clearly recognizes theimportance of this position to American farmers. Al Johnson is just the right person to hold the job.His Midwestern background, hands-on experience, policy expertise, good judgment, and vision foragriculture will help ensure an aggressive and sustained effort on the part of the administration toopen new markets for American farmers. With Al’s appointment, farmers can know they have a realfriend inside the USTR.”