Sanford Bishop, Agriculture Secretary? Georgia Blue Dog Could Get Post

Sanford Bishop, Agriculture Secretary? Georgia Blue Dog Could Get Post

As the Obama transition team is filling out the rest of the President-elect's cabinet, one name that pops to the surface is Rep. Sanford Bishop.

The Georgia Democrat is believed to be in the running for Agriculture Secretary, and his staff readily admits that he wants the post -- though they say that no deal is "officially" in the works.

"The congressman would very much like to have the position if it is in fact offered," said Bishop's chief of staff Phyllis Hallmon. "But we have had no official interaction with the President-elect's staff."

Bishop's name has been floated in numerous agriculture publications, as well as (mostly local) press. The resume seems, generally, right. He was co-chairman of Obama's Georgia campaign and has served on the House agricultural subcommittee since 2006. He represents one of the largest agricultural districts in the nation and is considered a "go-to lawmaker for Southern farmers."

A blue dog Democrat, Bishop is also regarded as the most conservative African-American Democrat in Congress. He has long championed federal subsidies and price boosters for peanuts (understandably -- they're his home state's biggest product). There are various controversies in his past, including a bizarre bathroom incident on an airline flight in 2002, but nothing seemingly debilitating to his chances.

Perhaps as important: another name being floated for the post, Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebelius, has said she's not interested.

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