Deb Haaland Confirmed As First Native American Cabinet Secretary
It’s rare that many of us would care about the confirmation of a US Secretary of the Interior, but this time it’s quite historic. CNN reports that New Mexico representative Deb Haaland has been confirmed as the new Interior Secretary in a 51-40 vote, making her the first Native American in a presidential cabinet position in the nation’s history. And hey, it only took 244 years!
BREAKING: The Senate has confirmed Deb Haaland to lead the Interior Department, making her the first Native American cabinet secretary in U.S. history.https://t.co/GLn4KQsrVG
— NPR (@NPR) March 15, 2021
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Haaland is a member of New Mexico’s Laguna Pueblo tribe, and was elected to Congress in 2018. She was one of the first of two Native American women ever elected to Congress, as she and Sharice Davids were elected on the same day.
The Senate has voted 51-40 to CONFIRM Rep. DEB HAALAND as Secretary of the Interior. pic.twitter.com/lzBw8eUUcp
— Nick Walden Poublon (@NWPinPDX) March 15, 2021
But it’s particularly noteworthy to have a Native American in charge of the Department of the Interior, an arm of the government that has traditionally been used to harass and oppress indigenous people. That department is also responsible for maintaining relationships with nearly 600 Native American tribes.
Proud and historic moment for all tribal nations as we watch the decisive 51st vote casted on the U.S. Senate floor to confirm @DebHaalandNM as the first Native American to serve as the Secretary of the Interior… pic.twitter.com/klVn48MC31
— Navajo Nation President Jonathan Nez (@NNPrezNez) March 15, 2021
“The historic nature of my confirmation is not lost on me,” Haaland said last month at her confirmation hearing. “But I will say, it is not about me. Rather, I hope this nomination would be an inspiration for Americans — moving forward together as one nation and creating opportunities for all of us.”
Honored to call you Madam Secretary. https://t.co/SChH6ZCc46
— Ayanna Pressley (@AyannaPressley) March 15, 2021
Deb Haaland has supported the Green New Deal and Medicare for All. She has traditionally opposed fracking, and fossil fuel development on US public lands.