Barrasso Opening Statement at Business Meeting to a Consider Nomination & Legislative Items

July 21, 2022

Click here to watch Ranking Member Barrasso’s remarks.

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, U.S. Senator John Barrasso (R-WY), ranking member of the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources (ENR), delivered the following remarks at a business meeting to consider the nomination of Ms. Laura Daniel-Davis to be assistant secretary of Land and Minerals Management at the Department of the Interior; and to consider a number of legislative items. 

To watch the full business meeting and see the full list of bills considered, click here. 

Senator Barrasso’s Opening Remarks: 

“Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

“Today’s business meeting includes a nomination and a number of legislative items. 

“The nominee before us today, to me, is not deserving of our support. 

“Last November, I voted against Ms. Daniel-Davis’ nomination to serve as assistant secretary of Land and Minerals Management at the Department of the Interior. 

“Since that time, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has highlighted the critical need for American energy independence. 

“In spite of this, Ms. Daniel-Davis has doubled down on this administration’s anti-American energy agenda. 

“The committee should reject her nomination. 

“I am going to reserve my further remarks for when we actually take up her nomination. 

“Today, we are also marking up a number of legislative items that are important to me and many of our Senate colleagues that we work with and members of this committee. 

“These are bills that seek to improve our public lands, honor our troops and American heroes, and conserve and improve our historic sites. 

“I am pleased to sponsor or cosponsor many of these pieces of legislation. 

“These bills also include a bipartisan water resources package.

“The package contains legislation to help farmers, ranchers, and rural communities in the West address the effects of drought. 

“Wyoming, and the other Colorado River Basin States, are facing severe drought. 

“In response, the Upper Basin states have developed a 5 Point Plan.

“A key provision of that plan is reauthorization of the System Conservation Pilot Program. 

“The System Conservation Pilot Program is designed to explore potential solutions to address declining water levels in Lake Mead and Lake Powell. 

“Senator Hickenlooper and I are offering an amendment to reauthorize this critical program and introducing a bill today to do that very same thing. 

“Today’s agenda also includes the Japanese American World War II History Network Act. 

“It would create a Park Service-administered network of interconnected sites across the country related to the mass incarceration of Japanese Americans during World War II. 

“This includes the Heart Mountain Relocation Center located in Park County, Wyoming. 

“Sites like Heart Mountain increase public awareness and recognition of the unjust and tragic events that occurred on American soil. 

“I am also a proud cosponsor of Senator Rubio’s bill, S. 3240 – Free Veterans from Fees Act; and Senator Duckworth’s bill, S. 1814 – Women Who Worked on the Home Front World War II Memorial Act. 

“S. 3240 would allow our veterans to hold special events at Washington, D.C. war memorials without having to pay fees. 

“Charging our brave heroes fees to hold veterans events at the very memorials that honor their legacy simply does not make sense. 

“S. 1814 would establish a new memorial in Washington, D.C. to honor the contributions and strong leadership of the roughly 18 million women who kept America’s economy and society running during World War II. 

“I am also very supportive of Senator Daines’ bill, S. 2561, which would effectively reverse the Ninth Circuit’s harmful Cottonwood decision. 

“This decision has created needless red tape and bureaucracy, and set litigation traps that stymie and chill projects designed to mitigate wildfires and improve forest health. 

“Finally, there are a number of public lands bills that I cannot support. 

“As I have said before, I do not support bills that would needlessly or arbitrarily restrict multiple uses on our public lands. 

“I also cannot support measures that take critical mineral extraction or energy production off the table.

“We must stop sending money to our adversaries, and become energy dominant by producing critical minerals and energy here at home. 

“Mr. Chairman, I look forward to continuing our work together, in a bipartisan way, to advance the legislative priorities of our members.”