Trump nominates deputy energy secretary to replace Rick Perry

 
In a series of tweets, Trump described Brouillette as a "total professional" and said his experience in the energy sector is "unparalleled." Trump also praised Perry for doing an "outstanding job" and said he would leave at the end of the year.
 
"I want to thank Secretary of Energy Rick Perry for the outstanding job he has done. He will be leaving at the end of the year to pursue other interests. Rick was a great Governor of Texas and a great Secretary of Energy," Trump tweeted.
 
"He is also my friend! At the same time, I am pleased to nominate Deputy Secretary Dan Brouillette to be the new Secretary of Energy. Dan’s experience in the sector is unparalleled. A total professional, I have no doubt that Dan will do a great job!" the president wrote.
 
Trump had announced Perry's plans to resign on Thursday.
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Brouillette served in the Energy Department during the George W. Bush administration. He was nominated by Trump to the No. 2 role and easily confirmed by the Senate in a 79-17 vote in August 2017.
 
He served as an Energy Department assistant secretary between 2001 and 2003 and also worked as chief of staff to the House Energy and Commerce Committee.
 
Before joining the Trump administration, Brouillette served as senior vice president and head of public policy for USAA, a financial services firm. He also worked as a vice president at Ford Motor Co. prior to that.
 
Once he is formally nominated, Brouillette will need to participate in a confirmation hearing before the full Senate votes on his nomination. He is unlikely to be a particularly controversial nominee given the ease of his first confirmation.
 
News of the selection for the top Energy Department post came a day after Trump announced that Perry would be leaving the administration by the end of the year.
 
Trump confirmed Perry's forthcoming exit after multiple reports surfaced that the Cabinet secretary had notified the president he would be stepping down.
 
Perry has been with Trump since the early days of his administration, having been confirmed in March 2017.
 
“A very good friend of mine who's been with me right from the beginning, and somebody that's going to be going, I guess, at the end of the year,” Trump said of Perry while touring a factory in Alvarado, Texas, on Thursday. “I'm going to miss you so much.”
 
Perry is stepping down from his post amid controversy surrounding his role in the Trump administration’s Ukraine policy.
 
Trump’s dealings with Ukraine are the focus of an impeachment inquiry in the House, and Democrats have sought documentation from the Trump Cabinet member about his involvement in the president's efforts focused on Ukraine.
 
Perry denied in an interview with Fox News on Friday that the Ukraine revelations had anything to do with his decision to step down, and that he wants to return to Texas to spend time with his family.
 
“It has absolutely nothing to do with Ukraine,” Perry said. “For the last eight or nine months, I have been looking back to Texas on a pretty regular basis.”
 
Perry said he is looking at “going onto the next adventure in life.”