Former Texas Governor Rick Perry also underwent his confirmation hearing to be Energy Department head Thursday. At the start of the hearing, Washington Senator Maria Cantwell reminded Perry that he had once called for the elimination of the very agency he was now tapped to head.
Sen. Maria Cantwell: “Congratulations on your nomination. In case you may have forgotten, you once called for the abolishment of this agency. I suspect that now, having had a chance to learn about the importance of this department, you have a very different opinion.”
That was Senator Maria Cantwell. Later in the hearing, former Governor Perry said he now regrets calling for the agency to be eliminated.
Rick Perry: “My past statements, made over five years ago, about abolishing the Department of Energy do not reflect my current thinking. In fact, after being briefed on so many of the vital functions of the Department of Energy, I regret recommending its elimination.”