Chris Saeger, Executive Director of the Western Values Project released the following statement in response to news that David Bernhardt has been nominated as Deputy Secretary of the Interior:
“There are a million reasons why David Bernhardt shouldn’t get this job, and even more questions about his previous tenure at Interior, and in the private sector. The Senate should hold him accountable about the Cadiz water project, the Abramoff scandals, and whether he believes public lands are good for anything besides drilling and mining. This is sadly just the latest example that powerful special interests are taking the reigns at Interior at the expense of all who value public lands.
Nominating Bernhardt for the number two job at Interior is one of the boldest examples yet of President Trump’s broken promises to ‘drain the swamp.’ Not only is Bernhardt going directly through the rotating door from a high powered lobbying firm into government, but he already stands to personally gain $3 million by rigging Bureau of Land Management regulations in his favor.”
Western Values Project previously filed suit against Interior to force the release of documents related to Mr. Bernhardt’s time at Interior during the Jack Abramoff scandals: https://www.eenews.net/assets/2017/04/25/document_gw_02.pdf
Mr. Bernhardt’s lobbying firm stands to benefit from decisions Interior has already made: http://westernvaluesproject.org/rumored-doi-2-stands-to-gain-from-loosening-blm-oversight-of-ca-water-project/