Easy confirmation expected for Moniz in the Senate

Ernest Moniz

Despite growing controversy surrounding President Obama’s pick to head up the Department of Energy, Ernest Moniz is expected to make it through the confirmation process, according to an analysis in Politico.

Soon after the nomination was announced, environmental groups raised alarm due to Moniz’ ties to the oil and gas industry from his time leading the Energy Initiative at MIT, which is heavily funded by the likes of BP, Saudi Aramco and Shell, Politico reports. Investigations by ProPublica - and later The New York Times and The Boston Globe - revealed financial connections to the energy industry. The revelations are expected to “heighten the drama” of his nomination hearing, Politico says, but not derail it. Moniz’ industry connections appear to be troubling only to Democrats.

According to Politico, “If Moniz was nominated by George Bush, you would see outrage by the environmental community and by Democrats [of] this pick as someone who is in the pocket of Big Oil,” said Tyson Slocum, director of the energy program at Public Citizen, a consumer advocacy group. The information about Moniz “should matter,” he said. “But it’s not going to.”

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