Energy & Environment

Nixed Interior nominee appointed to different department role 

An official President Biden originally wanted to nominate to be second in command at the Interior Department has found a new political position in the agency after reported opposition from swing-vote senators. 

Elizabeth Klein, who had been slated to be nominated as Interior’s deputy secretary, will now instead be senior counselor to the secretary. 

“I’m so proud to welcome our newest colleagues to the team, and I have full confidence in their ability to carry out Interior’s mission,” chief of staff Jennifer Van der Heide said in a statement on the appointment of Klein and others.

The White House confirmed to The Hill last month that it would no longer nominate Klein, whose nomination had not been formally sent to the Senate. 

Politico reported that she faced opposition from Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), while The Washington Post reported that Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) also objected to her nomination. 

Interior Secretary Deb Haaland previously indicated to reporters that Klein would still have a role at the agency. 

Klein’s new role was announced alongside other political officials, including Raina Thiele, who will serve as senior adviser for Alaska affairs and strategic priorities, and Heather Barmore, who will serve as director of digital strategy.

The department said in a statement that more than half of its political team members identify as Black, Indigenous or people of color and that 75 percent identify as women.

Tags biden appointee Deb Haaland Interior Department Joe Biden Joe Manchin Lisa Murkowski

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File - A Chevrolet Bolt is displayed at the Philadelphia Auto Show, Jan. 27, 2023, in Philadelphia. Electric vehicles are far less reliable than gasoline-powered cars, trucks and SUVs, mainly because most automakers are still learning how to build a completely new power system, according to this year's auto reliability survey by Consumer Reports.(AP Photo/Matt Rourke, File)
File - A Chevrolet Bolt is displayed at the Philadelphia Auto Show, Jan. 27, 2023, in Philadelphia. Electric vehicles are far less reliable than gasoline-powered cars, trucks and SUVs, mainly because most automakers are still learning how to build a completely new power system, according to this year's auto reliability survey by Consumer Reports.(AP Photo/Matt Rourke, File)

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In this photo released by the Governor of Sevastopol, Mikhail Razvozhayev telegram channel, a rescuer gestures as he helps people during an evacuation after storm and flooding in Sevastopol, Crimea, Monday, Nov. 27, 2023. A storm in the Black Sea took down power grids and left almost half a million people without power after it flooded roads, ripped up trees and damaged buildings in Crimea, Russian state news agency Tass said. (Governor of Sevastopol Mikhail Razvozhayev's telegram channel via AP)
In this photo released by the Governor of Sevastopol, Mikhail Razvozhayev telegram channel, a rescuer gestures as he helps people during an evacuation after storm and flooding in Sevastopol, Crimea, Monday, Nov. 27, 2023. A storm in the Black Sea took down power grids and left almost half a million people without power after it flooded roads, ripped up trees and damaged buildings in Crimea, Russian state news agency Tass said. (Governor of Sevastopol Mikhail Razvozhayev's telegram channel via AP)

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