Senate panel approves Granholm nomination to lead DOE
- By Justin Katz
- Feb 03, 2021
The Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources approved former Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm's nomination to lead the Department of Energy on Wednesday, setting up to a confirmation vote by the full Senate.
If confirmed as expected, Granholm will take the helm of the department as it, along with other federal agencies, continues to cope with the fallout of the SolarWinds hack. During her confirmation hearing, she said she had not yet been fully briefed on how the breach had affected the agency.
"We're getting hacked all the time and attacked all the time. We will have, inside of the DOE a person at a very high level that is responsible for making sure that this -- the response to this is coordinated," she said.
The department owned up in December to being hit by a "cyber incident related to the Solar Winds compromise." At the time, a departmental statement indicated that the breach had hit business networks and "not impacted the mission essential national security functions of the department, including the National Nuclear Security Administration."
The committee voted 13 to 4 to approve Granholm's nomination. During the meeting, Sens. John Barrasso (R-Wyo.) and Mike Lee (R-Utah) both praised Granholm for her personal record but said they would oppose her nomination based on the administration's recent executive orders aimed at ending federal subsidies of fossil fuels and rejoining the 2016 Paris climate deal that the United States exited under former President Donald Trump.
Justin Katz covers cybersecurity for FCW. Previously he covered the Navy and Marine Corps for Inside Defense, focusing on weapons, vehicle acquisition and congressional oversight of the Pentagon. Prior to reporting for Inside Defense, Katz covered community news in the Baltimore and Washington D.C. areas. Connect with him on Twitter at @JustinSKatz.