President Donald Trump pulled his nomination for Kathleen Hartnett White to chair the Council on Environmental Quality, a White House official confirmed to The Washington Post Saturday night.
White’s confirmation had been uncertain since she was nominated in October. White consistently pushed back against the idea that fossil fuel energy generation is the main factor driving climate change, putting her in a bad light with Democrats.
White also advocated against ethanol subsidies in the past, putting her on rocky ground with powerful, corn-state Republicans. She tried to downplay her position on ethanol subsidies during a Senate Environment and Public Works Committee hearing in November, Axios reported.
White’s name was in a group of nominations the Senate sent back to the White House at the end of 2017. Trump re-nominated White in January, starting over the confirmation process after White had already passed through committee. Trump withdrew White from consideration to be the administration’s chief council on the environment after she requested her name be pulled, according to WaPo.
“I want to thank President Trump for his confidence in me and I will continue to champion his policies and leadership on environmental and energy issues of critical importance to making our nation great, prosperous and secure again,” she said in a statement.
Sen. Tom Carper, the top Democrat on the Environment and Public Works Committee, said withdrawing White’s nomination was “the right thing to do” and that the Trump administration should nominate a “thoughtful environmental and public health champion to lead this critical office in the federal government,” according to the Associated Press.
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