Yesterday morning the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources favorably "reported out" to the full Senate the nomination of Rhea Suh to Assistant Secretary of Fish, Wildlife and Parks at the Department of the Interior.
The long-awaited committee vote fell along party lines, 12 to 10. Ms. Suh's nomination was controversial from the start.
The conservative Wall Street Journal yesterday wrote a derisive editorial entitled, "The Suh-and-Settle Nominee: A regulator who dislikes natural gas is a test for Senate Democrats."
Ms. Suh has gone through a grueling confirmation process, appearing before two different Senate committees, one of which asked for an extra hearing to focus on her record at the Interior Department, her stance on natural gas exploration, her knowledge of Alaska, and her pre-government career in the nonprofit environmental sector. CKA watched these hearings and were deeply impressed by Ms. Suh's professionalism, policy knowledge, and demeanor.
Ms. Suh now needs a 51-vote majority in the Senate to complete the confirmation and officially assume her post. Given new filibuster rules and no expectation that any of the Senate's 53 Democrats will block her on the floor, confirmation appears likely.
As Assistant Secretary of Fish, Wildlife and Parks, Ms. Suh will be associated with one of the most recognizable features of our government, our national parks. The value of our national parks to local economies has been valued at $30 billion per year, and they support over 250,000 jobs. Ms. Suh will oversee 394 national parks, 555 national wildlife refuges, and 35,000 employees.
CKA is a national, nonpartisan, nonprofit organization of Korean American leaders.
Our mission is to assert a strong, clear voice on issues of critical importance to Korean Americans and to support their full participation in all aspects of American life.