Rep. Huffman Statement on Bernhardt Nomination to Interior
Washington, D.C.- Rep. Jared Huffman (D-San Rafael), the Chair of the Subcommittee on Water, Oceans, and Wildlife, issued the following statement in response to news that President Trump will appoint Deputy Secretary David Bernhardt to the office of Secretary of the Department of the Interior:
“President Trump’s decision to promote David Bernhardt to be Secretary of the Interior is alarming and disappointing, and he will fit right in with a Cabinet that is stocked with lobbyists,” said Rep. Huffman. “A walking conflict of interest, Mr. Bernhardt has chosen his past industry clients’ interests over the public interest at every turn, and it’s clear that he is far too conflicted to run the Department of the Interior consistent with that Department’s important mission. If he is confirmed as Secretary, the Democratic House will conduct much-needed oversight over the Interior Department and ensure Bernhardt does not continue to advance his own special-interest agenda, to the detriment of the American people, and the health of the planet.”
Before his time as Deputy Secretary of the Interior, David Bernhardt was most recently employed as a federal lobbyist for a long list of clients with business before the Department. Among many other examples, Bernhardt has served as the lobbying and legal representative for the Westlands Water District and sued the Department of the Interior in that capacity, has worked for the U.S. subsidiary of a Russian-American oligarch’s oil conglomerate, and has lobbied on behalf of Cadiz, Inc, a groundwater storage company whose federal approvals were granted by the Trump Interior Department.