In a pair of recently unearthed videos posted online, President Joe Biden's nominee for a key Treasury Department role admitted that she wants to "starve" and "bankrupt" oil and gas firms in order to save the climate.
Saule Omarova — Biden's nominee to lead the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency — already faces an uphill climb toward confirmation in lieu of a Marxist paper she wrote in college and past support for radical, progressive initiatives such as the National Investment Authority proposal, the Washington Free Beacon reported.
Now her resurfaced comments about bankrupting the fossil fuel industry may only further complicate her prospects.
What did she say?
"Here what I'm thinking about is primarily the coal and oil and gas industry. A lot of the smaller players in that industry are going to probably go bankrupt in short order, at least we want them to go bankrupt if we want to tackle climate change," Omarova said in one clip from March.
The clip, which shows Omorova speaking during the Jain Family Institute's "Social Wealth Seminar" series, was reportedly uncovered by the American Accountability Foundation, a conservative political research group.
In another clip from May, the nominee went into more detail about her aims of financing green infrastructure projects by diverting investments away from the oil and gas industry.
"The way we basically get rid of those carbon financiers is we starve them of their sources of capital," she said at a virtual roundtable on "investment and decarbonization," again hosted by the Jain Family Institute.
Investment and Decarbonization www.youtube.com
Why does it matter?
The unearthed videos are not good news for Omorova's chances at confirmation.
With all 50 Republicans expected to oppose her nomination, the 55-year-old Cornell Law professor needed unanimous support from Democrats in the chamber. But Axios reported over the weekend that at least three Democrats — Sens. Jon Tester (D., Mont.), Kyrsten Sinema (D., Ariz.), and Joe Manchin (D., W.Va.) — have raised concerns over her nomination.
Speaking with the Daily Caller, AAF founder Thomas Jones said, "I just don't understand how the White House is going to go explain this to the Jon Testers or the Joe Manchins of the world, that she wants to bankrupt employers who employ a significant number of the constituents in their state. I think it's unconscionable."
"At the end of the day, these are people's lives, people are going to lose their jobs because she's going to support policies that are there to drive them out of work," he added.