In perhaps the most powerful rebuke of the green lobby to date, President-elect Donald Trump has chosen ExxonMobil president and CEO Rex Tillerson to be the nation’s top diplomat, sources said Saturday. NBC News anchor Andrea Mitchell tweeted Saturday afternoon:
— Andrea Mitchell (@mitchellreports) December 10, 2016
Tillerson’s name emerged recently, but he rapidly became Trump’s favorite over the past few days, according to Politico. The oil executive has extensive experience in international negotiations, and one transition source said he “fits the prototype” the president-elect is looking for. Trump reportedly “likes his style and background.”
Former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney has also been considered for the nation’s top diplomat, along with former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, who withdrew from the process late Friday afternoon. Mitchell’s report notwithstanding, other reported contenders include Admiral James Stavridis, Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Senator Bob Corker, and former UN Ambassador John Bolton.
Tillerson met with Trump at Trump Tower on Saturday, and while sources told Mitchell they expect the president-elect to choose the oil CEO, the announcement will not be final until Trump makes an official declaration, likely next week.
Tillerson would prove a controversial pick on many levels. Not only does he run the world’s most valuable oil company (at a time when climate alarmism seems to have reached a fever pitch), but he also has ties to Russian President Vladimir Putin.
The oil magnate started at the company as an engineer in 1975, and he became president in 2004. Since then, he has worked closely with Putin. In 2011, Tillerson made a deal with Russian oil giant Rosneft to provide access to lucrative oil resources in the Arctic, a pivotal region for oil exploration. That deal was blocked by subsequent U.S. sanctions against Russia, sanctions which Tillerson criticized for failing to consider the “broad collateral damage” they might cause.
Expect the liberal attacks that Trump is in bed with Putin to reach a fever pitch should Tillerson be chosen.
Next Page: But Tillerson’s position on climate change could be even more controversial.
But the climate angle could be even more controversial. President Obama considers the Paris climate accord to be one of his greatest accomplishments, and current Secretary of State John Kerry has pledged continued support for trying to implement the controversial climate agreement. In fact, Kerry openly declared “it pisses me off” that the presidential debates did not feature a discussion on climate change.
This year, the left opened the floodgates against Exxon, arguing that the company knew all along that climate change was the inevitable result of the use of fossil fuels, and that it deceived the public. Sixteen state attorneys general accused the company of consumer fraud, and so the company decided to file its own lawsuits in response.
Opposition to the liberal narrative on climate has been widely denounced and even silenced on college campuses, as well as attacked on the floor of the United States Senate in a “Web of Denial” climate inquisition. Nevertheless, President-elect Trump has stood firm in his convictions that the threats of climate change are exaggerated, and he even named EPA critic Scott Pruitt to head up the EPA.
Perhaps Democrats are so defensive on the issue because the science actually backs up Trump’s skepticism on climate change. Indeed, the liberal alarmism is starting to have the clear marks of a losing side fighting desperately to control any discussion of the issue.
Despite the impending firestorm of liberal criticism, support for the ExxonMobil CEO is deep: Trump invited him to New York reportedly on the recommendation of former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Defense Secretary Robert Gates. Tillerson met privately with Trump on Tuesday.