Obama forced to abandon anti-fracking Dept. nominee

“But the fact that you come in as an activist with an extreme position is just more of the same in the administration, in every little corner of government,” said Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-OK).

Greenwire reports,

President Obama will abandon the nomination of Rebecca Wodder as assistant secretary for the Interior Department’s park and wildlife programs, ending a tumultuous six-month battle with Senate lawmakers.

Wodder, who was nominated last June to replace Tom Strickland as the assistant secretary for fish, wildlife and parks, was asked to remain with Interior as a senior adviser to Secretary Ken Salazar to oversee conservation issues and the president’s Great Outdoors initiative…

“As a result of the prolonged nomination process, Rebecca Wodder has asked the president that she not be re-nominated,” Interior spokesman Adam Fetcher said.

The decision comes weeks after the Senate returned the Wodder nomination to the White House (E&E Daily, Dec. 19, 2011).

Wodder, who served as CEO of the conservation group American Rivers, was strongly opposed by several Republicans and at least one Democrat over her past statements on hydraulic fracturing, mountaintop-removal coal mining, Clean Water Act regulations and the removal of dams in the Pacific Northwest.

Her nomination passed the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee on a party-line vote last month, but it was unable to gain unanimous Democratic support in the Energy and Natural Resources Committee, which shares jurisdiction over her post…

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