Energy Sec. Nominee Rick Perry: I ‘Regret’ Recommending the Department’s Elimination


It’s been five years since “oops” slipped out of Rick Perry at a presidential debate where he forgot which government departments he would want to eliminate. Now that he is about to become a member of Donald Trump‘s presidential cabinet, Perry says that he now regrets his previous position that the U.S. ought to do away with the Energy Department.

Perry sat before the Senate today for a confirmation hearing about his nomination to become Secretary of Energy in the upcoming administration. When he was asked about his previous comments, Perry told the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources that he has renounced them after reconsidering his view.

“My past statements made over five years ago about abolishing the Department of Energy do not reflect my current thinking,” Perry said. “In fact, after being briefed on so many of the vital functions of the Department of Energy, I regret recommending its elimination.”

Perry also said that as Energy Secretary, he would work to beef up America’s nuclear stockpile, improve security, and encourage innovation in energy science and technology. Perry also used his hearing to talk about protecting American energy networks, and he also walked back somewhat from his previous criticisms of climate change science.

Watch above, via C-SPAN.

[Image via screengrab]

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