Updated Jan 7, 2022 - Politics

Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack's son joins pipeline company

Photo illustration of a pipeline with abstract shapes.
Photo illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios. Photo: Ashley Cooper/Construction Photography/Avalon/Getty Images

Jess Vilsack has taken a job as the general counsel of Summit Carbon Solutions, Mother Jones reports.

Catch up fast: Summit was started by GOP "kingmaker" Bruce Rastetter. The Ames-based company has proposed a $4.5 billion carbon capture pipeline project that would cross 30 Iowa counties, including Polk.

  • Vilsack is the son of former Iowa Democratic Gov. Tom Vilsack, who is the current U.S. Department of Agriculture Secretary.

Why it matters: Summit will rely on ethanol-friendly policies that Tom Vilsack has advocated for during much of his political career.

  • Jess Vilsack's new gig could potentially obligate his dad to recuse himself from decisions that directly affect the pipeline project, Mother Jones reports.

Editor's note: This story has been updated to remove a reference to a Jan. 7 Iowa Utilities Board meeting that was misattributed to the proposal.

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