West Virginia Sen. Shelley Moore Capito, the top Republican on the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, grilled an Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) nominee on Wednesday over an old tweet that included the hashtag #ResistCapitalism.
Carlton Waterhouse, who President Joe Biden nominated in June to serve as assistant administrator for the EPA Office of Land and Emergency Management, was one of three nominees to appear at the committee hearing. Capito pressed Waterhouse to explain the 2015 tweet, which claimed “the ends don’t justify the means” when it comes to energy.
We have receipts. This is the tweet Ranking Member @SenCapito was referring to when she asked @EPA nominee Carlton Waterhouse what he means by “the ends don’t justify the means” when it comes to energy and “#ResistCapitalism.” ⬇️ https://t.co/uqKN8RIJFA
— EPW Republicans (@EPWGOP) September 15, 2021
“I’m from an energy-producing state, and you have a wide variety of experience in a lot of different areas. As you would imagine, my staff and others have looked through your Twitter feed and I have a couple questions,” Capito said.
“One is a tweet you tweeted in 2015 when you said, ‘The ugly truth about energy. The ends don’t justify the means.’ And then you hashtagged a bunch of things, one of which was #ResistCapitalism,” she continued.
“You are going to be dealing in your position with a lot of private entities. … What does ‘resist capitalism’ mean to you and how would that interplay with what you would be doing? What does it mean when you say energy ends don’t justify the means?”
Waterhouse told Capito he could not recall the context of the tweet, which quoted another user’s tweet that has since been deleted.
“I recognize the value of capitalism as a way of making sure goods and services are made available to people, and I think reasonable and responsible regulation allows us to make sure people can be safe and protected in the environment in their daily lives,” he added.
Waterhouse has also faced scrutiny over his previous comments about race. He argued in favor of reparations for black people in a 2006 paper and claimed in a separate 2015 tweet that police shootings were the “symptom” of the “problem” of “White racial dominance.”
Republican Arkansas Sen. Tom Cotton called Waterhouse an “extremist” in an August statement to Fox News and said he “supports fringe environmental and racist policies.”