President-elect Donald Trump is expected to nominate Washington representative Cathy McMorris Rodgers as his Secretary of the Interior, a position that involves protecting federal land like the National Parks and conserving natural resources. Environmental groups have been quick to slam McMorris Rodgers for her environmental record – in the past, she’s voted to open public lands to drilling, mining, and logging, and in 2011 she co-sponsored a bill to sell off 3 million acres of public lands. And, like way too many members of Trump’s incoming administration, she’s a climate change skeptic.
Looking at McMorris Rodgers’ voting record is a bit disturbing. The League of Conservation Voters gives her a lifetime environmental score of just 4%. Out of more than 250 votes on environmental bills, the group considers only 10 of her votes to be pro-environment. In the past, she’s voted to allow drilling in vulnerable parts of the Arctic.
If she goes on to head the Department of the Interior, she would be in control of 500 million acres of public land, accounting for a massive 20% of the US landmass. The department manages energy development on federal lands, as well as our national parks, wildlife refuges, and outer continental shelf – all of which could be threatened by McMorris Rodgers’ pro-fossil-fuel agenda.
While the Trump administration has not yet revealed when her nomination will be announced, a member of the transition team has confirmed the President-elect’s choice to the media. House Republicans are reportedly already laying the groundwork to replace her as GOP Conference Chair.
“Trump is throwing American leadership out the window–especially on climate change–by nominating U.S. Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers to be Secretary of the Interior. She will open our public lands and natural resources to Big Oil and Big Coal, and put our parks, wilderness and endangered species at risk. We cannot allow that to happen. We will dig in and fight harder than ever to ensure that Trump and Rep. McMorris Rodgers cannot advance their dangerous policies—and we must start by demanding the Senate defeat this nomination,” says Tom Steyer, President of NextGen Climate.
Via USA Today
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