Senate votes to confirm Energy's No. 2 official

Senate votes to confirm Energy's No. 2 official
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The Senate on Tuesday confirmed Mark Menezes for the No. 2 spot at the Energy Department in a 79-16 vote. 

President TrumpDonald John TrumpNew Biden campaign ad jabs at Trump's reported 0 income tax payments Ocasio-Cortez: Trump contributed less in taxes 'than waitresses and undocumented immigrants' Third judge orders Postal Service to halt delivery cuts MORE nominated Menezes to be the department’s deputy secretary in March. He will replace Dan Brouillette, who previously held the role but was later promoted to Energy’s top job after former Secretary Rick PerryRick PerryEnergy secretary questions consensus that humans cause climate change OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Democrats push resolution to battle climate change, sluggish economy and racial injustice | Senators reach compromise on greenhouse gas amendment stalling energy bill | Trump courts Florida voters with offshore drilling moratorium OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Trump signs major conservation bill into law | Senate votes to confirm Energy's No. 2 official | Trump Jr. expresses opposition to Pebble Mine project MORE resigned. 

Menezes has served as undersecretary of Energy and has advised the department on policy and technology since 2017. Before joining the Trump administration, he lobbied for Berkshire Hathaway Energy, which, through subsidiaries, produces energy from sources including coal, natural gas, wind, solar, nuclear and geothermal. 

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Other former clients include Marathon Oil, ConocoPhillips, Koch Mineral Services and utility company Duke Energy.

Menezes was a relatively uncontroversial pick, as the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee advanced his nomination by voice vote. Just one senator, Catherine Cortez MastoCatherine Marie Cortez MastoHillicon Valley: DOJ proposes tech liability shield reform to Congress | Treasury sanctions individuals, groups tied to Russian malign influence activities | House Republican introduces bill to set standards for self-driving cars Senators introduce bipartisan bill to mandate digital apps disclose country of origin Democratic Senate campaign arm raised nearly M in August MORE (D-Nev.) expressed opposition to the nomination. She based her opposition on reports that the Trump administration was considering nuclear testing. 

“He has excelled as the undersecretary of Energy,” said Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee Chairwoman Lisa Murkowksi (R-Alaska), referring to Menezes’s prior role, during a floor speech. “He’s helped to set the policy direction of the department. ... I’m also confident that Mr. Menezes will be a great second-in-command.”