Energy Industry Leaders Hammer Murkowski For Damaging Alaska’s Oil And Gas Economy

Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) was blasted on Wednesday during an Energy Summit in Alaska hosted by her Republican challenger for the Senate, Kelly Tshibaka.

Oil & Gas Workers Association president Matt Coday and energy businessman Harold Hamm spoke at the summit and sharply criticized the incumbent Murkowski for casting the tie-breaking committee vote that allowed Joe Biden’s appointment of Interior Secretary Deb Haaland to advance.

Haaland has been the point figure in the Biden White House attack on Alaska energy production. The administration has advanced multiple executive actions that have put thousands of Alaskan energy jobs at risk.

Murkowski voted in favor of Haaland’s appointment even though she said that she was “more than a little disappointed in some of her responses” in conversations with the radical environmentalist.

Hamm said on Wednesday that Haaland was chosen by Biden because it was known that “she was going to do everything that she could to shut down development, not only in Alaska, but on federal land everywhere.” Hamm founded Continental Resources, a major oil producer.

Hamm added that Alaskans should be able to count on the votes from their senators to support American energy independence, although with Murkowski “that just hasn’t always been the case, unfortunately.”

Coday’s organization represents more than 45,000 energy industry workers across the country. He said that Murkowski’s vote in support of Haaland was “a slap in the face to every American who works in this industry.” He added that it was obvious that Haaland “would be against our jobs, that she was out to get our jobs, and she hasn’t disappointed on that front.”

Tshibaka also spoke at the summit and criticized Murkowski for enabling regulatory actions that have severely hampered Alaska’s energy sector. “That’s why we see companies pulling out of Alaska and investors pulling out,” she said.

She went on to say that it is time for Congress to “lock down on that and hold agencies accountable through budget cuts and appropriations or having multiple hearings before committees.”

A poll published earlier this month by AARP among likely Alaska voters indicated that Tshibaka leads Murkowski by eight percentage points, 43% to 35%.