Senate confirms Rick Perry as energy secretary

(RNN) - The Senate has approved former Texas Gov. Rick Perry to be energy secretary in the Trump administration.

Perry ascended to the governorship after George W. Bush was elected president in 2000, and he remained governor until 2015, becoming the longest-serving in Texas history. Perry cited his job creation record as governor in his two runs for president.

His infamous "Oops" moment during a 2012 Republican primary debate helped to sink his presidential aspirations. Ironically, he was listing the departments he would eliminate as president, including the Energy Department.

His experience as the leader of Texas, which has some of the largest oil reserves in the U.S., likely factored in to his nomination and shaped his view on tapping into domestic energy.

The GOP holds a 52-48 majority in the Senate.

President Donald Trump moved on Jan. 24 to advance both the Keystone XL and Dakota Access oil pipelines, saying that both projects would bolster American energy independence and create thousands of jobs.

Perry also sits on the corporate board for Energy Transfer Partners, a company pushing to build the Dakota Access Pipeline.

Perry touts himself as a 10th Amendment Republican, advocating for states as laboratories for democracy and pushing for a smaller, less intrusive government.

He also ran for president in a crowded Republican primary field for the 2016 race.

He was born in Paint Creek, TX, and is a graduate of Texas A&M University. After college, he flew C-130s in the Air Force. He began his political career in 1985 as a state representative. He later served as Texas Agriculture Commissioner until he ran for and won the post of lieutenant governor.

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