Speed Reads

cabinet picks

Rick Perry reportedly Trump's top choice for energy secretary

Rick Perry, the Republican former governor of Texas who, while running for president in 2011, famously forgot that the Energy Department was one of the government agencies he wanted to get rid of, is said to be Donald Trump's top candidate to lead the department.

People close to the selection process told Bloomberg News there are three other people still under consideration — Ray Washburne, a former Republican National Committee chairman and vice chairman of the Trump Victory Committee, and Democratic senators Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota and Joe Manchin of West Virginia. Perry is a board member of the company behind the Dakota Access Pipeline, Energy Transfer Partners, and had his second meeting with Trump on Saturday during the Army-Navy football game in Baltimore.

The Energy Department is responsible for the country's policies on energy and safety in handling nuclear material, energy conservation, research on energy, and domestic energy production. Under President Obama, the Energy Department has been run by two scientists — current head Ernest Moniz, a nuclear physicist who once headed an energy initiative at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and Steven Chu, the Nobel laureate who was a professor of physics and molecular and cellular biology and directed the Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. Perry recently finished a stint on Dancing With the Stars, in which he came in 12th place. Catherine Garcia