Murkowski votes in committee against Suh. Begich will likely vote against her on floor.

UPDATED: U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski voted in committee on Thursday against approving Rhea Suh to be assistant secretary for Fish and Wildlife and Parks at the Interior Department.

The Energy and Natural Resources Committee, where Murkowski is the ranking minority member, voted to approve Suh along party lines, 12-10. Suh’s nomination now heads to the Senate floor, where she needs 51 votes to be confirmed. U.S. Sen. Mark Begich’s office said that he would likely vote against her confirmation. Begich is up for relection. A vote for Suh would likley be used against him by his Republican opponents. GOP candidate, Dan Sullivan, put out a release in February urging him to vote against Suh.

“Given his blind support for President Obama’s earlier Interior Department nominees, and his record of voting with the President 97 percent of the time, I won’t hold my breath,” Sullivan said.

If confirmed, Suh would head the Interior Department division that has decided against allowing a potentially life-saving road from King Cove to Cold Bay. Eleven miles of that road would cut through the Izembek National Wildlife Refuge. The road has received much attention in the state recently, largely thanks to Murkowski.

Suh has also in the past been critical of oil and gas development. While working for an environmental foundation, Suh said in 2007 that “the pace and magnitude of this [natural gas] development is easily the single greatest threat to the ecological integrity of the West.”

However, Democratic Sen. Mary Landrieu, who chairs the committee, said that Suh has assured the committee that she would “absolutely support the responsible development of natural gas and other fossil fuels from our public lands.”

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6 thoughts on “Murkowski votes in committee against Suh. Begich will likely vote against her on floor.

  1. GOP

    Now that the election season is heating up, of course he’ll vote against Obama’s nominees; however, Obama got his vote on far worst nominees before the election season started to heat up. And I hope Alaskans don’t soon forget that he was the deciding vote on. The ACA and has voted with the anti-Alaskan President ninety-seven percent of the time. So now, should we be surprised or fooled by Begich? I don’t think so.
    Sen. Murkowski’s tribute to Sen. Stevens the other day was heart warming and a good rememberance that we need to give her someone that she can better work with. Remember, if the Republicans take control of the senate that Lisa will become chair of the Energy Committee – – a great reason to vote against Begich.

  2. Dick in Auke Bay

    I usually don’t take the time or have the desire to post comments on blogs or about news stories although I have to admit that I enjoy reading them. This story’s comments, albeit there are only a few, struck me oddly. Lisa Murkowski did what I expected she would and should do. It has made me stop and think, why are others so excited? Are their expectations being exceeded? Or is there enthusiasm. The result of their expectations finally being met? I would submit it was the later and hope that Lisa continues to show up for work and be passionate in her defense of the 49th state.
    Finally Lisa, you’re starting to do a good job.

  3. Haines Reader

    I’d say it was high time that Sen. Murkowski got more engaged and dug in her high hees for Alaska’s benefit. I’ve not been a huge fan of her father or of her. Now, however, I have to admit I like her intestinal fortitude on this pursuit.

  4. Glenda

    Alaska use to have a fighter in their corner in the United States Senate. His name was Ted Stevens. Now it looks like our state’s senior senator Lisa Murkowski has decided to step up and take on that role. I applaud her courage and efforts. Meanwhile, Mark “the Mouse” Begich slips and slides around with ever changing statements and optics about his independence. Make no mistake, if “the Mouse” is reelected he’ll be empowered to continue to advance the liberal anti-Alaska agenda perpetuated by President Obama and Harry Reid. Don’t let Begich fool you. We need more Republicans in the senate like Lisa Murkowski.

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