Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump is considering nominating Oklahoma oil and gas mogul Harold Hamm as energy secretary if elected to the White House on Nov. 8, according to four sources close to Trump’s campaign.
The chief executive of Continental Resources <CLR.N> would be the first U.S. energy secretary drawn directly from the oil and gas industry since the cabinet position was created in 1977, a move that would jolt environmental advocates but bolster Trump’s pro-drilling energy platform.
Dan Eberhart, an oil investor and Republican financier, said he had been told by officials in Trump’s campaign that Hamm was “the leading contender” for the position.
Eberhart said he had discussed the possible appointment with top donors at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland this week.
Three other sources close to the Trump campaign confirmed Trump was considering Hamm for the post. One of the sources said he first heard that Hamm was a contender from Trump officials on Sunday.
Hamm, 70, became one of America’s wealthiest men during the U.S. oil and gas drilling boom over the past decade, tapping into new hydraulic fracturing drilling technology to access vast deposits in North Dakota’s shale fields.
Hamm’s future was discussed at a private fundraiser organized by a Trump Super PAC, Great America PAC, in Cleveland on Monday. Hamm was there, along with major donor Foster Friess and former Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson, one of the sources said, asking not to be named.
None of the sources was aware of who else Trump may be considering for the job.
Representatives for Trump and Hamm did not respond to a request for comment.
Past heads of the U.S. Department of Energy, which is charged with advancing U.S. energy security and technology and dealing with nuclear waste disposal, have typically boasted a political or academic background.
This is not the first time Hamm has been in contention for the job.
The Republican Party’s presidential nominee in 2012, Mitt Romney, vetted Hamm to be energy secretary but ultimately decided against him because the two men have differing positions on renewable energy sources like wind.
Hamm was due to speak at the Republican convention on Wednesday night.
He made headlines in 2015 after settling a protracted divorce case and agreeing to pay his ex-wife $975 million - reported to be the biggest divorce settlement in history. His fortune is now estimated at nearly $12 billion.
Trump, who has yet to make any announcements about his prospective cabinet, has already surrounded himself with strong advocates of traditional energy sources like oil, gas, and coal and has promised to gut environmental regulations to boost drilling and mining if elected.
He tapped U.S. Congressman Kevin Cramer of North Dakota, a climate skeptic and drilling advocate, to help draw up his campaign energy platform, and picked Indiana Governor Mike Pence, also a climate skeptic, as his running mate.
Both moves cheered the energy industry but alarmed environmental activists who say a Trump presidency would set back years of progress on issues like pollution and climate change.
“Given that Hamm’s as close as we’ve got to a fracker-in-chief in this country, it would be an apropos pick for a president who thinks global warming is a hoax manufactured by the Chinese,” said leading environmental activist Bill McKibben.
Trump’s Democratic rival Hillary Clinton has promised to bolster regulation and increase use of renewable fuels to combat climate change if elected.
Knowing how Domestic Oil & Gas works to short change landowners across the US (30% of Our States), could Mr. Hamm pass Trumps new requirement for Obeying US Laws?
I think not. You don't make Billions by following the laws, ask Doug from CHK.
The alternative is having Hillary put someone in who is ANTI everything in oil and gas. As a mineral owner I am very excited that Mr. Hamm is being considered. With Mr. Hale, we have a choice: Choose American oil and gas or import from the Middle East where are hostages to their drastic price changes (remember the 1970's). The massive drilling of oil and gas in the US that resulted from new drilling techniques flooded the market with oil and gas and as a result, Americans across the US have enjoyed cheaper fuel to heat with and cheaper gas prices at the pump. Oil and gas companies suffered not the other states who benefitted from super cheap energy prices.
Also I travel a lot in states that were the major ones to drill during the last oil and gas boom and it is middle income people who are suffering from the downtrend in the drilling: Restaurants and motels are closed with auction signs in the front (think of those people who no longer have jobs), oil field service people (the frackers, the people who drove water trucks, all of the people working on rigs) are unemployed and losing homes. A lot of people who work in that industry were from states outside the drilling areas. Guess I am trying to figure out how putting someone in who understands the oil and gas industry would shortchange landowners across the US. Please enlighten me
HAMM'S SPEECH AT THE GOP CONVENTION WAS INTERESTING, TELLING HIS LIFE STORY !!! HIS STORY IS TYPICALLY AMERICAN IN THOSE DAYS 60 YEARS AGO !!! HE CAME FROM AN EXTREMELY POOR FAMILY, AS MOST OF US DID !! HE LEFT HOME AT 17 WITH NO MONEY, LOOKING FOR A JOB !!! HE ENDED UP A BILLIONAIRE, THROUGH THE OIL AND GAS INDUSTRY, A SHINING EXAMPLE OF THE AMERICAN DREAM !!! HAMM WILL BE A GREAT DIRECTOR OF THE DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY, SINCE THE U.S.A. IS NOW THE WORLD LEADER IN OIL AND GAS RESOURCES ! HE TOTALLY UNDERSTANDS THE INDUSTRY AND THE GREAT EFFECT IT CAN HAVE ON THE U.S. ECONOMY WITH THE RIGHT LEADERSHIP !!!
Having seen first hand all that O&G companies and their followers have done to Landowners, I don't recommending trusting any one in the O&G industry.
Ask the farmers who are having pipelines and fiber optics being placed on their land without their permission or payment due to signing a Pipeline ROW with the crooks who are going around the Appalachian Basin conning them into signing a ROW contract for their neighbors that steals their ROW.
Ask anyone under production who isn't being paid a royalty for one of many reasons, including they were over paid over the years when they have been consistently underpaid by a huge amount.
Ask why the laws that have been broken in each state are Civil Matters, even though they are on the books as Criminal Acts. This is reserved for the O&G industry only.
The only people who could disagree are either not Landowners or are not under production yet.
What about all the mineral owners that have become multi millionaires from oil and gas? There are plenty of them and they love the industry. I find that the land owners who bitch the most are the ones that don't own minerals.
I FIND THAT ALSO ! THE PEOPLE COMPLAINING ABOUT FRACKING DON'T EVEN OWN MINERALS !
I don't agree with the anti-frackers but I would guess that most of them drink water, and that's what they're worried about.
In your first post, you shined the light on an example of the American dream, a rags to riches oil man. My view is that no one makes the rags to riches trip on their own, they have help along the way.
Yea, and most don't drink the water anyway!
The problem with GHS is that there are zero industry people left. It has become a wailing wall for "my operator screwed me" people. I think I am the only industry guy left and i dont check in very much.
I know Jay. There were so many more who used to comment who are gone now. We were on our way back to Louisiana this past week and driving on Highway 79 through east Texas and there are so many energy companies that are shut down. Linn energy has 2 locations on Hwy 79 and both were shut down and had pad locks on gates. That isn't just THE COMAPANY--that represents 100s of people who are out of work. I ran into a couple in Shreveport who were from west Tx and they were talking how they couldn't sell their Harley as everyone was unemployed and they were desperately trying to raise money to survive on. This country is in sad shape
The Tens Of Thousands being "screwed" Nation wide need to roll over and play dead, it won't help to tell the truth.
Next someone will say Land Owners count.
I'm going to stop checking in too.
I am a landowner and under production from several small areas with minerals. I have leases with every major gas driller in the Haynesville Shale. Some companies are better to deal with but I don't feel I have been cheated. You see, in the Haynesville we got bonuses that were unbelievable. As Two Dogs said, people became millionaires overnight thanks to oil and gas companies. As long as gas prices stayed around $5 we and the oil and gas companies made money. Who has suffered the most during this crunch: OIL AND GAS companies. A lot of them have gone bankrupt.