Politics Interior Nominee Haaland Sidesteps Question on Biden’s Keystone XL Order: ‘It Is His Decision’
Interior nominee Haaland vows 'balance' on energy, climate
Haaland would be the first Native American to lead a Cabinet agency, but her stance on oil and gas drilling has stirred GOP opposition.Deb Haaland, a New Mexico congresswoman named to lead the Interior Department, said she is committed to “strike the right balance” as the agency manages energy development and seeks to restore and protect the nation's sprawling federal lands.
Representative(D., N.M.) on Tuesday would not say whether she agrees with President Biden’s executive order canceling the Keystone XL pipeline, saying only that “it is his decision” during her confirmation hearing for interior secretary.
Senator Bill Cassidy (R., La.) pressed Haaland on her views on the executive order Biden signed on his first day in office, asking if she agrees with the decision to rescind the pipeline’s permit “knowing that 11,000 current or future jobs are eliminated because of it.”
Haaland faces second day of confirmation hearing questions over Interior nomination
President Joe Biden's Interior Secretary nominee, Deb Haaland, will face a fresh round of questions from lawmakers on Wednesday during the second day of her confirmation hearing before the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee. © Joshua Roberts/Getty Images Nominee for Secretary of Interior, Congresswoman Deb Haaland, speaks after President-elect Joe Biden announced his climate and energy appointments at the Queen theater on December 19, 2020 in Wilmington, Delaware. Haaland is the first Native American nominated to serve on the presidential cabinet.
She acknowledged that the pipeline has been “an issue” that “both sides [are] very passionate” about.
“With respect to President Biden’s decision, it is his decision, he’s the president,” she said.
Cassidy also touched on an exchange from earlier in the hearing in which Senator John Barrasso (R., Wyo.), the ranking member on the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, questioned Haaland about ain which she claimed that Republicans don’t believe in science.
Barrasso said that he and several other Republican members of the committee are medical doctors and he called the comment “concerning.”
“Do you think that as medical doctors we don’t believe in science? How do you stand by this statement?” Barrasso asked.
OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Key vote for Haaland's confirmation | Update on oil and gas leasing | SEC update on climate-related risk disclosure requirements
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“Senator, yes, if you’re a doctor, I would assume that you believe in science,” Haaland replied.
Cassidy noted Haaland’s “perception as to how Republicans view science” and pointed to a “State Department reported based upon science that says building the pipeline lowers greenhouse gas emissions.”
“If you are the president would you eliminate the pipeline with the 11,000 jobs and the futures that are less bright for those families knowing that by not building it — based on science from the State Department — we would have increased global greenhouse gas emissions?” he asked.
He added that he is hoping that “Democrats pay attention to the science” and asked if the department, under her leadership, will “be guided by a prejudice against fossil fuel or will it be guided by science.”
“If I could just take the liberty of saying prejudice on fossil fuels — perhaps isn’t the way I would describe it,” Haaland responded. “I would say that President Biden is . . . moving toward the tremendous opportunities that we have in diversifying our energy resources.”
Tribes have high hopes as Haaland confirmation hearing nears
FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. (AP) — Deb Haaland stood with fellow tribal members protesting an oil pipeline outside a reservation in North Dakota, advocated for protecting cultural landmarks in her home state of New Mexico and pointedly told government witnesses in a hearing about blasting sacred Native American sites near the U.S.-Mexico border: “I don't know how you can sleep at night.” Native Americans have reason to believe the two-term U.S. congresswoman will push forward on long-simmering issues in Indian Country if she's confirmed as secretary of the Interior Department, which has broad oversight of tribal affairs and energy development.
Cassidy then accused the congresswoman of “dodging my question.”
The exchange was one of several notable points of tension in the hearing for Haaland, who would make history as the first Native-American cabinet secretary if confirmed by the Senate.
A number of Republicans have expressed skepticism of Haaland’s confirmation, including Barrasso, who said that he is “troubled” by some of her positions on climate and energy issues, adding that she holds “views that many in my home state of Wyoming would consider as radical.”
Senator Joe Manchin (D., W. Va.), the chair of the Energy and Natural Resources Committee, has said he is undecided on whether he will back Haaland’s confirmation.
With the Senate evenly divided between the parties, Manchin, a moderate Democrat who does not always vote along party lines, has taken on newfound power. When Manchin votes no, Democrats need the support of at least one Republican senator for the matter at hand to pass.
A spokeswoman for Manchin reportedly told NBC News that he had met with the New Mexico congresswoman on Zoom to discuss her confirmation but that he had “remaining questions.”
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Zinedine Zidane, coach of the Spanish top club Real Madrid, has in the highest tones of two youngsters on the scene, namely Kylian Mbappe (22) from PSG and Erling Haaland (20) from Borussia Dortmund raved. He even compared her with the two multiple world footballers Lionel Messi (33) and Cristiano Ronaldo (36). © Provided by SPOX The Blancos' head coach had followed the Champions League games closely this week, watching both Mbappe and Haaland. "You are very, very good.