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Former Iowa Radio Host/Professor/Climate Change Skeptic Gets Top Science Post at USDA

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WASHINGTON, D.C.– Sam Clovis hosted a radio show and taught economics at Morningside College in Sioux City before he became more active in politics, first as a failed U.S. Senate candidate and then as a prominent surrogate for presidential candidates Rick Perry and Donald Trump. The support for the latter helped him get one of the top spots in President Trump’s administration in the USDA.

Clovis is the administration’s choice to become Under Secretary of Agriculture in charge of the Department of Agriculture’s research, education, and economic analysis programs. Clovis presently serves as the USDA’s Senior White House Advisor.

Someone with a science or similar background traditionally holds the post, according to the Washington Post. Clovis does not.

His previous comments expressing skepticism that humans are responsible for climate change feed concerns from environmentalists.

President Trump has also previously expressed doubts about people’s impact on changes to the environment.

But in a statement Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue praised what he says Clovis would bring to the position.

“Dr. Clovis was one of the first people through the door at USDA in January and has become a trusted advisor and steady hand as we continue to work for the people of agriculture. He looks at every problem with a critical eye, relying on sound science and data, and will be the facilitator and integrator we need. Dr. Clovis has served this nation proudly since he was a very young man, and I am happy he is continuing to serve.”

Clovis had been a top surrogate for Republican presidential candidate Rick Perry, the former governor of Texas, before the 2016 Iowa Caucuses. But in the summer of 2015, Clovis bailed on Perry’s struggling campaign and became a national co-chair for Trump’s presidential campaign.