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Bernie Sanders on Rex Tillerson as Secretary of State: ‘Very Sad, Very Dangerous’

Bernie Sanders Rex Tillerson, Bernie Sanders Donald Trump, BErnie Sanders climate change

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Bernie Sanders issued a stern response to President-elect Donald Trump‘s nomination of ExxonMoil Corporation CEO Rex Tillerson as Secretary of State. In his statement, Sanders said that Tillerson must be opposed and accused Trump of putting fossil fuel profits in front of the needs of the planet.

“Very sad. Very dangerous. Mr. Tillerson must be opposed,” Sanders’ statement reads. “Mr. Trump is making it abundantly clear that the fossil fuel industry’s short-term profits are more important than the future of the planet.”

In a longer statement, Sanders said that nominating Tillerson sends a “very troubling message to the international community.”

Sanders full statement reads:

Mr. Trump’s nomination of Rex Tillerson for secretary of state is sending a very troubling message of the international community. Not only is Mr. Tillerson a pal of Russia’s authoritarian leader, Vladimir Putin, but he is the head of one of the largest oil companies in the world. In this appointment, Mr. Trump is making it abundantly clear that the short-term profits of the fossil fuel industry are more important than climate change and the future of the planet. Very sad. Very dangerous. Mr. Tillerson must be opposed.

Sanders’ opposition to Tillerson is not surprising. He made climate change one of his key issues during his primary campaign against Hillary Clinton for the Democratic nomination.

“Sadly, we now have a Republican Party that is more concerned about protecting the profits of Exxon, BP and Shell and the coal industry than protecting the planet,” Sanders said in a statement on his campaign site. “While fossil fuel companies are raking in record profits, climate change ravages our planet and our people – all because the wealthiest industry in the history of our planet has bribed politicians into ignoring science.”

In the past, Tillerson has advocated for a carbon tax, however, he has also said that climate change is an “engineering problem” that has “engineering solutions.”

ExxonMobil is also being investigated by New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman on allegations that it lied to investors and the public about the effects of climate change. Schneiderman alleges that Exxon knew about the dangers, but still backed groups that doubted climate change. Tillerson and the company deny those claims.

Tillerson, who has no prior government experience, must be confirmed by the Senate in order to become the U.S.’ top diplomat. There have already been two high-profile Republicans voicing concern about his nomination, including Marco Rubio and John McCain. However, these Senators focused on Tillerson’s friendship with Putin, not his views on climate change.

“Being a ‘friend of Vladimir’ is not an attribute I am hoping for from a #SecretaryOfState,” Rubio tweeted.

“It’s a matter of concern to me that he has such a close personal relationship with Vladimir Putin,” McCain told CBS News. “And obviously they’ve done enormous deals together and that would color his approach to Vladimir Putin and the Russian threat.”

Rex Tillerson: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know

Rex Tillerson, the former CEO of Exxon Mobil, is Donald Trump's Secretary of State. Tillerson also has deep ties to Russia.

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Rex Tillerson & Climate Change: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know

As the CEO of ExxonMobil, Rex Tillerson has a complicated relationship with climate change. Tillerson is Donald Trump's nominee for Secretary of State.

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8 comments

  1. So let me get this straight the executive for mobile is now considered a threat to the United States ? Are these Democrats saying that the reason for all of these high gas prices because of the executive of mobile and his connections to Russia ?

    It seems like the Democrats have been doing a lot of business with Russia .

    • Where you live? Gas prices haven’t been high in years….thanks to Obama….😄 & yes, Exxon Mobil/Corporate America thrives of off thus oil/gas industry, which is why we’ve had such massive layoffs in the states..but with these pics Trump has appt. Gas prices are sure to sore to $3.50-$4.50/gal…then we can whine over high gas prices.

    • Ahh, no, Michael. Why do you think Don-the-Con wouldn’t show his tax returns even after he admitted he paid no taxes? It would have shown all his dealings with Russia. Ol’ Don knows due to a lack of checks and balances, that Russian oligarchs make far more money than American oligarchs. Now, there can be a single, whole big ass global fraternity of oligarchs; especially now that Donnie owes his election to Putin . . . as far as low gas prices, it’s because under Obama we’ve become independent from foreign oil . . . like it or not, it’s fracking that has brought the price of oil down . . . Donnie could have never won the Presidency on his own . . . our President-elect is Putin’s Puppet! Welcome to the new America, Comrade Michael!