Trump taps Perry deputy to replace him at Energy Department

Business News
Rick Perry

FILE – In this May 30, 2019, file photo, Energy Secretary Rick Perry speaks at an energy summit in Salt Lake City. A business executive Perry recommended as an adviser to Ukraine’s government exaggerated his military credentials, according to veterans who examined his record. Robert Joseph Bensh claimed to have been a member of the U.S. military’s most elite units: Army Rangers, Special Forces and Delta Force. But a summary of his military career shows he spent less than five years in uniform, almost all of it with the Army National Guard. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer, File)

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump on Friday selected Dan Brouillette, deputy to departing Energy Secretary Rick Perry, to lead the Energy Department, calling him a “total professional” with unparalleled experience.

Trump acted quickly, just a day after Perry told the president that he would leave by year’s end. Perry said his decision was not related to his role in administration actions on Ukraine that are now the focus of a House impeachment inquiry.

Brouillette has embraced Trump’s call for U.S. dominance of international energy markets and says he backs an “all of the above” policy that promotes nuclear and renewable solar and wind energy as well as coal, natural gas and oil. Environmental groups, many lawmakers and others fault the administration for trying to spur the country’s oil and gas production boom rather than rein in the climate-damaging fossil fuels.

He has traveled from Japan to former Soviet states to Qatar and Israel and beyond, promoting U.S. natural gas and natural gas production companies.

“When it comes to exporting LNG, the United States is open for business,” Brouillette said in one such European stop last year.

Brouillette previously worked as an executive at USAA, which provides insurance and other financial services to members of the military, and as a vice president at Ford Motor Company.

He worked as an assistant energy secretary under George W. Bush and a Louisiana state energy regulator, among other work.

Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.