House ag chair defeated

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Agriculture lost decades of experience in the defeat of House Agriculture Committee Chairman Collin Peterson. The Minnesota Democrat lost Tuesday to the Republican Challenger Michelle Fischbach, garnering 53 percent to Peterson’s 39 percent of votes in Minnesota’s District 7.

In a statement, Peterson said, “We ran a strong and positive campaign, but with the President winning this district by 30 points again, and the millions in outside money that was spent to attack me, the partisan tilt of this district was just too much to overcome.”

Peterson has led Democrats on the committee for the last three farm bills. Based on seniority, Democratic Representative’s Jim Costa of California, David Scott of Georgia, or Marcia Fudge of Ohio, could become the next House Agriculture Committee Chair.

Fischbach’s campaign has indicated she would seek a seat on the committee. Democrats retained control of the House but did lose a few seats, thinning the majority margin.