With President Obama looking at the makeup of his second term cabinet, a number of folks from his first term look set to step down or get pushed out. The Wall Street Journal highlights three officials dealing with energy policy that could find themselves unemployed very soon, including Colorado’s Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar.
WASHINGTON — Energy-industry officials and environmental groups are watching for change at the top in President Barack Obama’s second term, with Environmental Protection Agency chief Lisa Jackson, Interior Secretary Ken Salazar and Energy Secretary Steven Chu seen as possible candidates to step down.
Any new faces could have a big impact on some of the most important issues affecting the US economy, including the rapid growth of oil and gas production backed by new drilling technologies and the decline of coal.
Mr. Salazar’s spokesman said the secretary remains “focused on the job.” The White House declined to comment on who might leave the Cabinet or when, and representatives of the EPA and the Energy Department didn’t return messages seeking comment…
While there is no particular impetus for Ms. Jackson or Messrs. Salazar and Chu to leave right away, all three have shouldered considerable criticism from corporate executives, industry lobbyists and Republicans on Capitol Hill.
Mr. Salazar, a former US senator from Colorado, was widely criticized for issuing a temporary drilling ban after the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.
Remember that Vanity Fair article that belittled Salazar’s lack of influence in the Obama administration? Now it matters more than ever.
Salazar has never been one of the Obama administration’s favorite cabinet members (see: disastrous BP spill press conferences), nor that of the energy industry.
Just look at Salazar’s recent play to publish new oil shale rules. His rush to publish these job-killing anti-energy regulations, even though Obama has four long years, suggests that maybe Salazar too knows his days are numbered. We can only hope.