Energy Secretary Bill Ritter, Anyone?

With a hat tip to Allison Sherry of the Denver paper, The Washington Post includes former Colorado Gov. Bill Ritter’s name with a number of others yesterday in a list of possible replacements for Energy Secretary Steven Chu:

One name seems to be popping up increasingly in the chatter about possible picks to replace the likely departing Steven Chu as secretary of energy: Tom Steyer, head of Farallon Capital Management, one of the world’s biggest hedge funds…

He’s been on a fairly long list of folks who’ve been mentioned since the election for the job: former Clinton White House chief of staff and Obama 2008 transition head John Podesta, founder and chairman of the Center for American Progress; former Colorado governor Bill Ritter, [Pols emphasis] who runs the Center for the New Energy Economy at Colorado State University; former North Dakota senator Byron Dorgan, who was on the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee and is co-author of Blowout, an energy eco-thriller; Susan Tierney, who was co-head of the 2008 Obama transition team for energy and was assistant secretary of Energy for policy in the Clinton administration; and Steve Westly, a venture capitalist focusing on renewable energy technology firms, former top California state official and major Obama fundraiser.

Former Colorado Gov. Ritter, presently serving as the head of Colorado State University’s Center for the New Energy Economy, is widely credited as the driving force behind passage of tougher oil and gas drilling protections during his term–which would make his appointment great news for conservationists, and no doubt provoke howls of protest on the pro-energy right.

That said, there appears to be no shortage of qualified candidates for the job.  

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