Monday, October 23, 2017
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And Then There Were 2: Rick Perry Confirmed as Energy Secretary

Energy Secretary-designate, former Texas Gov. Rick Perry, testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, Jan. 19, 2017, at his confirmation hearing before the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee. (Photo: AP)

President Donald J. Trump Just 2 Shy of a Full Cabinet

Energy Secretary-designate, former Texas Gov. Rick Perry, testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, Jan. 19, 2017, at his confirmation hearing before the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee. (Photo: AP)

Energy Secretary-designate, former Texas Gov. Rick Perry, testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, Jan. 19, 2017, at his confirmation hearing before the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee. (Photo: AP)

The U.S. Senate on Thursday voted to confirm former Texas Gov. Rick Perry as Secretary of the Department of Energy after weeks of obstruction by the Democratic Party. Mr. Perry’s confirmation leaves President Donald J. Trump just 2 shy of a full Cabinet after weeks of obstruction by the Democratic Party, despite public opposition to the tactic.

Earlier on Thursday, the Senate also voted 58 to 41 to confirm Dr. Ben Carson as Secretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The remaining nominees are Sonny Perdue for Secretary of the Department of Agriculture, and Alexander Acosta, who was nominated by President Trump for Secretary of Labor last month after fast food millionaire Andy Puzder withdrew his nomination.

As the 47th top executive of Texas from 2000 to 2015, a still-popular Gov. Perry oversaw the world’s 12th largest economy and major energy-producing state. Not only did Texas experience stronger job growth than the rest of the nation from 2000 to 2013, but according to the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas it led the nation in creation of jobs at all pay levels, too.

“Texas has also created more ‘good’ than ‘bad’ jobs,” the Fed report stated. “Jobs in the top half of the wage distribution experienced disproportionate growth. The two upper wage quartiles were responsible for 55 percent of net new jobs. A similar pie chart cannot be made for the rest of the U.S., which lost jobs in the lower-middle quartile over the period.”

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