The former Deputy Secretary of Energy, Dan Brouillette, has been confirmed as the next Secretary for the Energy Department on Monday. The announcement came after Rick Perry, who was serving as the Energy Secretary from 2017, intended to resign in October and left the office on December 1.
A day after Perry resigned, the Senate confirmed Brouillette’s nomination by a 70–15 vote.
The opposition has been claiming that Perry left the job in the wake of the rising questions in the impeachment inquiry which alleged him of being actively involved in the dealings with Ukraine, while withholding US’ military aid to Ukraine.
The whole Ukrainian dealing started when the president requested Ukraine to investigate its political rival Joe Biden and his son Hunter Biden, a fact which has now become the center of the House’s impeachment inquiry against Trump.
Meanwhile, both Perry and Brouillette have been dragged in the impeachment hearings, along with other Republicans.
As and when the leaders testified in the hearings, more revelations in the matter came out. The US ambassador to the European Union, Gordon Sondland, in his testimony, stated that he worked with Perry on Ukraine matters “at the express direction” of the president.
Associating his name with Perry and former special envoy Kurt Volker, Sondland categorized himself as a part of “three amigos” tapped to handle Ukraine matters.
Originally from Paincourtville, Louisiana, Dan Brouillette served as a member of Louisiana’s State Mineral and Energy Board from 2013 to 2016 and sworn in as the Deputy Secretary for Energy in August 2017.
Brouillette also worked for the department under the administration of former President George W. Bush and also served as an executive at the US Automobile Association (USAA) and the Ford Motor Company.
It appears that Brouillette’s longtime positive history with the Republicans in the party made his promotion from the Deputy Secretary’s post to that of Secretary easier. The 57-year-old was nominated despite opposition from the Democrats, who criticized him for failing to give equivalent answers about the former Energy Secretary’s dealing with Ukraine.
Senator Ron Wyden, a Democrat from Oregon, accused Dan Brouillette of waging a “full-court stonewall,” while Senator Joe Manchin, a Democrat from West Virginia, called Brouillette a “good man.”
“He has been forthcoming,” Manchin said. “He has not held anything back.”
While Dan Brouillette defended his name saying that he was not related to Ukrainian dealings in any form, nor he had any conversation tied to the matters, Democrats have been actively involving his name in the crisis.
It appears that the focus of the US energy has shifted from policies to politics, with the larger aim of pointing fingers at the Republican’s choice, portraying them as unfit, ahead of the 2020 presidential elections in the country.