Washington, D.C. — After President Donald Trump announced that he intends to nominate Acting U.S. Interior Secretary David Bernhardt to replace former Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke, Matt Lee-Ashley, senior fellow at the Center for American Progress, issued the following statement:
With David Bernhardt as his right hand, former Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke poisoned the department’s proud traditions with a culture of political favoritism and oil industry handouts. President Trump now wants to promote Bernhardt to a job for which, as a former oil industry lobbyist, he is too conflicted to serve.
Americans deserve an interior secretary who is not captive to his oil industry clients, but who will stand up for our national parks, honor the sovereignty of tribal nations, and lead us to a clean energy future. The U.S. Senate should swiftly reject his nomination and insist that President Trump nominate someone who can clean up the Interior Department, respect scientific integrity, and restore the public’s trust.
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