Sasse: “Free trade is a clear-cut win for Nebraska.”

U.S. Senator Ben Sasse released the following statement after convening a meeting with Robert Lighthizer, nominee to lead the U.S. Trade Representative office. Sasse and Lighthizer were joined by leaders from Nebraska agriculture, including Nebraska Farm Bureau President Steve Nelson, Nebraska Cattlemen President Troy Stowater, Nebraska Pork Producers President Russ Vering, Nebraska Wheat Growers President Randon Peters, Nebraska Corn Growers President Dan Wesely, and U.S. Soybean Export Council Chairman Jim Miller.

“Free trade is a clear-cut win for Nebraska,” said Sasse. “I’m glad that some of Nebraska’s agriculture leaders brought their perspectives directly to U.S. Trade Representative nominee Lighthizer. Nebraska feeds the world and, to continue on that mission, we need to build trade networks around the globe."

“Senator Sasse and members of the Farm Bureau are going to keep talking about the future of trade,” said Nelson. “Free trade creates networks and opportunities for Nebraskans, especially those of us that farm, and it needs to be a top priority. Nebraska Farm Bureau looks forward to continuing these conversations with Senator Sasse and nominee Lighthizer.”

“Nebraska Cattlemen greatly appreciates Senator Sasse’s leadership on promoting trade for agriculture,” said Stowater. “It is a virtual certainty that U.S. red meat production will be at new all-time annual records in both 2017 and 2018, and we have an immediate need to emphasize export opportunities with our global trading partners. We look forward to working with USTR nominee Robert Lighthizer in promoting U.S. beef exports and removing barriers to trade."

“On behalf of Nebraska’s pork producers, I am very appreciative of Senator Sasse’s leadership in arranging this meeting with United States Trade Representatives nominee, Robert Lighthizer,”said Vering. “Nebraska’s progress in expanding its pork industry for the next generation will rely heavily on foreign markets and sound free trade agreements.”

"Access to foreign markets is important for wheat growers as half of the wheat in our state is exported,” said Peters. “On behalf of the Nebraska Wheat Growers Association, I’d like to thank Senator Sasse for his continued efforts to highlight the importance of international trade and support our state’s farmers."

“Nebraska is known for its corn,” said Wesely. “That being said, we still have work to do when it comes to promoting our products and educating our leaders about the benefits of free trade. Senator Sasse, by leading these conversations, is an advocate Nebraskans should be proud of.”

“We want to thank Senator Sasse for bringing Nebraskans to the table today,” said Miller. “With sixty to seventy percent of Nebraska soybeans being exported, our farmers know the importance of free trade. Our nation, through our trade representatives, needs to ensure that the agriculture industry is given every opportunity to succeed.”


Steve Nelson, of Axtel (Kearney County)

Troy Stowater, of Wayne (Wayne County)

Russ Vering, of Scribner (Dodge County)

Randon Peters, of McCook (Red Willow County)

Dan Wesely, of Morse Bluff (Saunders County)

Jim Miller, of Belden (Cedar County)