Drain the Swamp: BP’s top lawyer is now the top environmental enforcer at Justice
It’s been 632 days since Trump took office and the halls of the White House are filled with the dirty footprints of the countless fossil fuel insiders. How could industry possibly assume more power in this administration?
By Climate Denier Roundup
Well, move over, coal-dusted smog lovers, and take a seat, gassy pipeline boosters, because last week the Senate officially confirmed one of the oiliest swamp creatures of all, Jeffrey Bossert Clark, to the top environmental position in the Justice Department.
Clark’s nomination was officially announced last summer, so his confirmation isn’t exactly a surprise. But because we needed more depressing confirmation votes on our schedule this month, the Senate just got around to clearing Clark last week. In the 52 to 45 vote, Democratic Sens. Joe Manchin (WV) and Claire McCaskill (MO) crossed the aisle to join Republicans in clearing Clark for the gig. (We’re not exactly shocked about Manchin…and white women haven’t been great firewalls for democracy recently, either.)
Per the Hill, Clark’s job at the DOJ “will include being the top law enforcement official in pursuing claims against polluters and companies that violate environmental laws” and “defending Trump’s aggressive deregulatory agenda against an onslaught of lawsuits.” Since he’s questioned the legality of tying the EPA’s endangerment finding to IPCC science multiple times, we’re not too confident he’ll hew to the IPCC when making his decisions.
Want to protest Clark’s appointment? Better do it soon. The Trump administration has a proposal in the works that would block protests outside the White House and on parts of the National Mall. They claim protests are costing too much money, but we have a sense it’s maybe something elsegoing on…(If you want to preserve your ability to trample all over Trump’s lawn, the public comment period is open until the end of the day today.)
So congrats to the oil and gas industry’s latest shill to join the rest of the swamp creatures in Washington. There’s a chance that we may soon lose the ability to show them how we really feel on their home turf. But maybe it would be good to stay away: if Clark’s plans for the DOJ look anything like what he defended in the Gulf, DC will be a very messy place indeed.