Tom Vilsack

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Former Iowa Governor Tom Vilsack showed off his skinny self during his stop in Des Moines for the holidays. Actually, Vilsack seemed to show the “aw, shucks” demeanor he would sometimes show before his days in the national spotlight as the U.S. Ag Secretary. He looked noticeably thinner to me. But much like he declined to do when he was governor, he declined to tell me how much weight he had lost this time. To me, he looks the thinnest I can remember. He said he is still running “5,6, sometimes 7 miles”. But he joked that if you saw him moving, you wouldn’t think he was pushing that hard. Vilsack isn’t known for his blazing speed, but he does have marathons under his belt. So it’s not like he doesn’t push his body. He did credit better eating, which was the theme of his visit today at the Hy-Vee in Des Moines.

Vilsack said he would unveil a $20 million pilot program next month to incent people to eat better. He didn’t give out a lot of details. It sounds like they will come out next month. But when people use the USDA’s food programs for lower-income families, they could get some kind of cash back or cash incentive on their monthly award if they buy healthy food.

What did you think of President Obama’s remarks today about that attempted terrorist attack on Christmas? Did you expect more after three days of silence? Was it damage control after his Homeland Security Director Janet Napolitano seemed to flip from Sunday to Monday? Sunday, she said the system worked, then Monday it failed. Something sure seemed to have changed in 24 hours time.