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Senator Fischer joins Senate Agriculture Committee

Sen. Deb Fischer official photo for 115th Congress (courtesy: Sen. Fischer's office)

Senator Deb Fischer announced Tuesday she is joining the Senate Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry Committee.

“I’m excited to announce that I am now a member of the Senate Agriculture Committee. For over 40 years, I’ve worked with agriculture and rural development organizations across the state of Nebraska. Agriculture is the backbone of Nebraska’s economy and it’s a big part of my own life. As a state senator in the Nebraska Legislature and as a U.S. Senator, common-sense agriculture policy has been a top priority for me, and I am honored that I now have an opportunity to be more involved at the federal level," Fischer said.

“This coming year is going to be critical as the 2014 farm bill expires and the committee works to write the next farm bill. Throughout this process, I’m going to continue traveling Nebraska, as I’ve done for the past five years, and listen to thoughts, suggestions, and concerns from our state’s many ag producers. At this important juncture, my priorities will be supporting an affordable and viable farm safety net, safeguarding crop insurance, and expanding trade opportunities for Nebraska producers and their families," she said.

“In this new role, I look forward to working together with Nebraskans, Chairman Pat Roberts, and my colleagues on the Ag committee to advance the smart policies farmers and ranchers need to do their job of feeding our hungry world,” Fischer said.

“I’m pleased Senator Fischer will be joining the Agriculture Committee. We have worked together on a number of successful legislative efforts on behalf of rural America. Given her firsthand experience in the agriculture industry, Senator Fischer will be a welcome addition to the Committee, just in time to represent Nebraska’s farmers and ranchers in Farm Bill negotiations. I have no doubt she will do a fine job,” said Senate Agriculture Committee Chairman Pat Roberts (R-Kansas)."

Since joining the U.S. Senate in 2013, Senator Fischer has secured a number of wins for Nebraska agriculture. Some of these accomplishments include:

• Restoring fairness with a crop insurance fix: The five-year highway bill, which was signed into law in December 2015, reversed $3 billion in cuts to the crop insurance program that were initially included in the two-year budget agreement.

• Negotiating a bipartisan compromise for on-farm fuel storage: The Water Infrastructure Improvements for the Nation (WIIN) Act of 2016 included a bipartisan provision Fischer negotiated that modified costly EPA regulations that could have negatively affected agriculture producers with on-farm fuel storage.

• Advancing a biotechnology labeling compromise: Fischer helped pass legislation that eliminated a patchwork of state-by-state laws, reduce costs, and provide certainty for Nebraska ag producers and food processors.

• Fought for years to eliminate the harmful Waters of the United States (WOTUS) rule and draw attention to the negative effects this rule would have on all Nebraskans.

• Brokered the first shipment of U.S. beef to Israel in over a decade: Senator Fischer worked with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) on a historic agreement to lift the ban on U.S. beef imports to Israel. The first shipments to Israel came from the WR Reserve plant in Hastings, Nebraska.

• Welcomed Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue to Cherry County, Nebraska: Fischer and Secretary Perdue led a roundtable discussion with Sandhills ranchers where they heard about the challenges these producers face as they work to feed the world.

President of the Nebraska Farm Bureau released a statement regarding Sen. Deb Fischer Appointment to Senate Agriculture Committee.

“The appointment of Sen. Fischer to the Senate Agriculture Committee is tremendous news not just for Nebraska farmers and ranchers, but for farmers and ranchers across our country. As a rancher, and as an individual who has represented the interests of agriculture at all different levels of public service, we could not be more pleased to have her providing leadership and direction to the Senate Agriculture Committee as they begin the task of developing the 2018 Farm Bill. We thank her for her continued commitment and her ongoing efforts to improve the environment in which Nebraska’s farm and ranch families work to operate and grow their family businesses," Nelson said.

Governor Pete Ricketts released the following statement following the announcement:

“Congratulations to U.S. Senator Deb Fischer on being selected to serve on the Senate Ag Committee. This is a critical time in agriculture as the Farm Bill debate begins. Senator Fischer will play an important role in helping ensure the interests of Nebraska’s farmers and ranchers are heard in Washington.”

Nebraska Department of Agriculture Director Steve Wellman said the following regarding the announcement:

“I’m pleased to hear Senator Fischer joined the Senate Agriculture Committee. The committee’s role in agriculture and nutrition is extremely important to Nebraska. The Senator’s presence will provide an important voice for our state.”

Jane Raybould, candidate for U.S. Senate, has been sharing with voters about her plan to serve and represent Nebraskans on the all-important Agriculture Committee. Raybould released a statement following the announcement of Sen. Fischer joining the Senate Agriculture Committee.

"The people of Nebraska are smarter than the Washington game Mitch McConnell and Deb Fischer are attempting to play. Nebraskans know—our farmers and ranchers know bull when they see it and the voters will treat this as such, “ said Jane Raybould, candidate for U.S. Senate.

"Mitch McConnell is clearly terrified of losing one of his most loyal party votes. Washington Republicans have woken up to the fact that Senator Fischer is incredibly vulnerable. This is the epitome of an election-year stunt,” said Sarah Sinovic, Deputy Campaign Manager.

“Jane Raybould didn't wait until it was election season to recognize agriculture as the 'economic engine' of Nebraska—it's nice that Senator Fischer wants to do something now but where was she for the first five years of her term?" Sinovic continued.

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