Democratic senator says he’ll vote against Obama FERC nominee

By Brian Wingfield
Bloomberg News

Democratic Senator Joe Manchin said he’ll vote against President Barack Obama’s choice to lead the U.S. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, throwing the confirmation of Ron Binz into uncertainty.

“Mr. Binz’s actions prove that he prioritizes renewables over reliability,” Manchin, of West Virginia, said today in a statement. “His approach of demonizing coal and gas has increased electricity costs for consumers.”

Manchin’s vote against Binz means the nominee won’t have the full backing of Democrats on the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee that is considering the nomination. Senator Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, the panel’s top Republican, said yesterday that she won’t support Binz’s nomination.