Trump Picks ExxonMobil CEO Rex Tillerson for Secretary of State

HeadlinesDec 13, 2016

It’s official: Donald Trump has chosen the CEO of the world’s largest oil company and a man with no political experience for a top Cabinet position. This morning, Trump tweeted, “I have chosen one of the truly great business leaders of the world, Rex Tillerson, Chairman and CEO of ExxonMobil, to be Secretary of State.” Environmental groups have widely condemned the nomination. Exxon is facing multiple lawsuits over its role in covering up the science behind climate change. Tillerson is also known to have close ties to Russian President Vladimir Putin, who awarded Tillerson the country’s Order of Friendship decoration in 2013. Both Senate Democrats and Republicans have expressed concern and opposition to Tillerson’s nomination, which comes only days after President Obama ordered a review of Russia’s role influencing the presidential election. The CIA has reportedly already concluded Russia intervened in the election to help Trump win. One of the focuses of the Senate confirmation hearings will be Exxon’s $500 billion oil exploration partnership with the Russian government’s oil company, Rosneft. Considered the largest oil deal in history, the partnership can only go through if the U.S. lifts sanctions against Russia, which the Obama administration imposed over Russia’s intervention in Ukraine. Click here to see our full interview about Rex Tillerson with Bill McKibben, co-founder of; Erich Pica, president of Friends of the Earth U.S.; Carroll Muffett, president of the Center for International Environmental Law; and Joe Romm of the Center for American Progress.

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