President Donald Trump has talked frequently about 'draining the swamp' of inside dealers in Washington. But lobbyist Jeff Miller might be considered part of the new swamp. Miller, is a close friend of Energy Secretary Rick Perry, is pushing the administration for a bailout worth billions of dollars for FirstEnergy Solutions, a bankrupt coal and nuclear power company.
You know what a is? One person who undoubtedly knew what Trump was talking about last month was Jeff Miller, an energy lobbyist with whom the president had dined the night before. Miller had been hired Energia radiante yahoo dating FirstEnergy Solutions, a bankrupt power company that relies on coal and nuclear energy to produce electricity. Although Trump didn't agree to the plan — he still hasn't — for Miller, a president's public declaration of interest amounted to a job well done.
How a single lobbyist helped carry a long-shot idea from obscurity to Energia radiante yahoo dating presidential stage is a twisty journey through the new swamp of Trump's Washington.
Rather than clearing out the lobbyists and campaign donors that spend big money to sway politicians, Trump and his advisers paved the way for a new cast of powerbrokers who have quickly embraced familiar ways to wield influence. Miller is among them. Arnold Schwarzenegger and Texas Gov. Rick Perry, also a close friend. He ran Perry's unsuccessful presidential campaign in And when Trump tapped Perry to lead the Energy Department, Miller shepherded his friend through confirmation, sitting behind him, next to the nominee's wife, at the Senate hearing.
When Perry came to Washington, Miller did, too.
He launched his firm, Miller Strategies, early last year and began lobbying his friend and other Washington officials. Besides Perry, Miller is close to other Trump-era power players.
Miller also has continued to raise money for GOP politicians. Ted Cruz of Texas and Greg Pence of Indiana, who's seeking the congressional seat once held by his younger brother, the vice president, according to federal campaign records. Miller declined to comment for this story. Brian Walsh, president of America First Action, said Miller raises money for the group on a volunteer basis.
Miller, who lives in Texas, spent Energia radiante yahoo dating outside of Washington independently developing an "amazing" network of connections, Walsh said. He described Miller as a "straight shooter" and rejected the notion that he is cashing in on Trump's election and Perry's ascension to energy chief. But Tim Judson, executive director of Nuclear Information and Resource Service, an activist group, called Miller's involvement in the bailout request the ultimate "Washington swamp" situation.
Miller registered as a lobbyist in Washington in Februaryjust after Trump took office. He was hired by FirstEnergy in Energia radiante yahoo dating Lobbying disclosure records show he was paid to target the highest levels of American government: The coal industry's top priority at the time was seizing on a key Trump campaign promise — to bring back coal jobs — and ask for unprecedented federal assistance.
Ohio-based Murray Energy Corp. Among other measures, the intervention would have exempted power plants from obeying a host of environmental laws and spent billions to keep coal-fired plants open, an unprecedented federal intervention in the nation's energy markets.
Despite the high-powered lobbying, Perry rejected the request in August, saying the emergency order wasn't the right mechanism. He offered another option, asking federal energy Energia radiante yahoo dating to approve a plan that would reward nuclear and coal-fired power plants for adding reliability to the nation's power grid.
But the independent Federal Energy Regulatory Commission rejected the plan in January, saying there's no evidence that past or planned retirements of coal-fired power plants pose a threat to grid reliability. Soon after, FirstEnergy began pushing anew for the Miller has visited the Energy Department at least twice since June, including on the day Trump delivered a speech on his energy "Energia radiante yahoo dating" at the agency's Washington headquarters.
The company argues the emergency order is needed to prevent premature retirement of coal and nuclear plants that "cannot operate profitably under current market conditions. The Ohio-based company filed for bankruptcy in late March, days after announcing it would shut down three nuclear plants in Ohio and Pennsylvania within three years.
The company also plans to close a West Virginia coal-fired plant, one of a series of closings as the coal and nuclear industries struggle to compete with electricity plants that burn cheaper natural gas.
FirstEnergy's bid for the emergency request is widely opposed by business and environmental groups as an unfair tipping of the scales in favor of faltering energy sources. An independent that oversees the power grid in 13 states and the District of Columbia has said the Eastern grid is in no immediate danger.
FirstEnergy can shut down its three nuclear power plants within three years without destabilizing the power grid, according to a report last month from the wholesaler, PJM Interconnection. Still, the push for a bailout continues. The Defense Production Act of is Energia radiante yahoo dating to prioritize industries deemed vital to national security. President Harry Truman used the law to cap wages and impose price controls on the steel industry.
FirstEnergy said it supports the premise, although it says it has not specifically urged Perry to use the defense law.
Perry said the administration is looking at the defense law "very closely," one of several options being considered. Associated Press writer Steve Peoples contributed to this report.