People's Action head: Marcia Fudge would 'fight for everyday people' as USDA chief

George Goehl, director of the progressive group People’s Action, argued Tuesday that Rep. Marcia FudgeMarcia FudgeSunrise Movement endorses Nina Turner in special election for Ohio House seat Fudge violated the Hatch Act, watchdog finds Carter sworn in as House member to replace Richmond, padding Democrats' majority MORE (D-Ohio) would be the best choice for President-elect Joe Biden to nominate to lead the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).

Goehl noted in an interview on Hill.TV’s “Rising” that Fudge has been a fervent defender of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), commonly known as food stamps, and argued she would be the best pick to ensure access to the program amid the coronavirus pandemic.

“The USDA, really, we think of it as a rural agency but first and foremost it’s a food policy agency,” Goehl said. “And in a pandemic when you’ve had millions of people lose their jobs, you’ve got record food lines both in urban and in rural communities, food policy is going to be critical.”

Goehl contrasted Fudge to former Sen. Heidi HeitkampMary (Heidi) Kathryn HeitkampEffective and profitable climate solutions are within the nation's farms and forests Bill Maher blasts removal of journalist at Teen Vogue Centrist Democrats pose major problem for progressives MORE (D-N.D.), who is also reportedly under consideration for USDA head and who has been criticized for accepting donations from large corporations that Goehl says profit at the expense of smaller-scale farmers.

Heitkamp, a more moderate Midwestern Democrat, worked on two farm bills while in Congress and has expressed an interest in the job. Sen. Chuck GrassleyChuck GrassleyConservatives launch 'anti-cancel culture' advocacy organization Lawmakers bicker over how to go after tax cheats On The Money: Biden says workers can't turn down job and get benefits | Treasury launches state and local aid | Businesses jump into vax push MORE (R-Iowa) recently floated Heitkamp for the position, saying she'd "be able to get things done" for farmers even if control of Congress is divided come January.

“Marcia Fudge is like a longtime advocate, she’s an expert on food stamps, a fighter for expanding the SNAP program, and so that’s the kind of leadership we’d like to see in that program coming out of here,” Goehl said on Hill.TV. 

“I think on the other end you’ve got Heitkamp whose donor list in many ways is a who’s who of the exact corporations that are ruining America, whether it’s big tech, big banks or big pharma, and so I think you’ve got a really clear choice about somebody who’s gonna fight for everyday people, or somebody who’s gonna fight for big [agriculture],” the People’s Action head added. 

Watch part of Goehl’s interview above.