Two-term Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm may be about to profit millions of dollars in vested stock options in a "green" company whose board she formerly sat on, by virtue of her new position as President Biden's energy secretary.
She agreed that if confirmed, she would sell off her stock options in Proterra, an electric bus company, within 180 days of taking office.
And not only is the president fine with it, both he and Vice President Harris are helping her raise the value of her holdings, causing even CNN to do a double-take.
There are literally hundreds of electric vehicle manufacturers in the Unites States, chief among them Detroit's Big Three and Elon Musk's Tesla. Biden and Harris all but ignored those to single out Proterra for praise and a virtual tour of their facilities.
"Proterra was selected for the virtual visit that day because it is the leading U.S. manufacturer of electric buses, employing 600 workers at its South Carolina and California plants," a senior administration official said
of Biden's visit. "Neither Secretary Granholm nor the Department of Energy were involved in selecting the Proterra plant."
Nonetheless, it raised eyebrows at CNN.
"That Granholm even promoted electronic cars as part of the administration's climate push is already ethically questionable, experts say," wrote CNN's Kristen Holmes in her report Thursday.
"But Biden and Harris' direct highlighting of Proterra is even more problematic as it could increase the company's value when it goes public — and increase Granholm's profits."
No one can say they weren't warned.
The Free Beacon also reported that she co-owns, along with her husband, a company called Granholm Mulhern Associates. It provided consulting services to green energy companies.
Although it was dissolved when she became energy secretary, her husband, Daniel Mulhern, reportedly planned to re-form it solely under his own name, and service its former clients.
Nevertheless, the Senate confirmed Granholm on February 25, with 14 Republicans voting with the Democrats, 64-35. Sen. John Barrasso voted "nay," citing the administration's war on fossil fuel.
"President Biden has declared war on American energy and American energy workers," the Wyoming Republican said
on the Senate floor. "I cannot in good conscience vote to approve his nominee for secretary of Energy."
Last week Barrasso asked for an investigation into Granholm's possible conflict-of-interest.
"Given that status, the up to $5 million in value of investment that Secretary Granholm continues to hold in Proterra, Inc. is positioned to increase in light of her personal and substantial involvement in an aggressive, wide-ranging and tireless public relations campaign to promote electric vehicles, batteries and charging infrastructure; her leadership in promoting President Biden's American Jobs Plan, including its proposal to spend $174 billion 'to win the EV market,'" Barrasso wrote
But she has some strong supporters in her corner.
The far-left Media Matters For America (MMFA) rushed to Granholm's defense in a piece headlined
, "Right-wing media cook up fake scandal about Biden's energy secretary after the president virtually tours an electric bus company."
MMFA devoted nearly 600 words blasting both the Free Beacon and Fox News for their coverage of Granholm's mounting scandal. Now that CNN has entered the picture, they may have to make a few adjustments.
MMFA closed with this admission:
"Granholm advised Media Matters prior to entering the administration."
She really gets around.
From the moment that Donald Trump's election was certified by Congress and throughout his administration, critics hounded him for a laundry list of imaginary wrongs. Chief among those were clams that he somehow profited from his office in violation of the Emoluments Clauses of the Constitution.
It wasn't until January 25, five days after he'd left office, that the Supreme Court finally instructed
the lower courts to dismiss all emoluments cases against him.
It's doubtful that Granholm will have to go through anything approaching that, despite even CNN raising questions.
But through it all, one thing is clear: The "green" in green energy has nothing to do with the environment; it stands for the money.
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