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Former Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm. Photo: Sopa Images/Getty Images

President-elect Joe Biden is expected to tap former Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm to serve as secretary of energy, people familiar with the matter tell Axios.

Why it matters: Granholm will play a key role in making good on Biden’s promise to shift the U.S. to clean energy. Her prior experience in the auto industry is largely seen as a strength that will appeal to blue-collar workers, Politico, which first reported the news, writes.

Our thought bubble, via Axios' Amy Harder: Granholm is likely to satisfy — or at least not upset — most corners of the Democratic Party.

  • Her track record of working with the auto industry, especially its evolution to electric vehicles, will be a key asset of fulfilling Biden's climate agenda.

The big picture: Granholm, the first woman elected governor of Michigan, served two terms from 2003 to 2011, during which she focused on revitalizing the auto and manufacturing sectors.

  • She also served as Michigan's attorney general from 1998 to 2002.
  • Co-chair of Hillary Clinton’s transition team in 2016, she has thrown her support behind low-carbon economic recovery and would oversee Biden’s plan to reduce emissions as energy secretary.
  • Granholm has also served as an adviser to Pew Charitable Trusts’ Clean Energy Program.
  • If confirmed, she would be the second woman to head the department since it was established in 1977.

Editor's note: This story has been updated with additional information on Granholm's background.

Go deeper

Ben Geman, author of Generate
Jan 20, 2021 - Energy & Environment

Biden's plan to upend Trump's environmental legacy

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios. Photo by Brendan Smialowski/AFP via Getty Images

President-elect Joe Biden will on Wednesday order a government-wide review of over 100 Trump-era policies and direct agencies to prepare a suite of emissions and energy efficiency rules.

Why it matters: New information from transition officials offers the full scope of Biden's imminent, inauguration-day burst of environmental and energy policy moves.

Stalemate over filibuster freezes Congress

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Mitch McConnell's inability to quickly strike a deal on a power-sharing agreement in the new 50-50 Congress is slowing down everything from the confirmation of President Biden's nominees to Donald Trump's impeachment trial.

Why it matters: Whatever final stance Schumer takes on the stalemate, which largely comes down to Democrats wanting to use the legislative filibuster as leverage over Republicans, will be a signal of the level of hardball we should expect Democrats to play with Republicans in the new Senate.

Dave Lawler, author of World
2 hours ago - World

Biden opts for five-year extension of New START nuclear treaty with Russia

Putin at a military parade. Photo: Valya Egorshin/NurPhoto via Getty

President Biden will seek a five-year extension of the New START nuclear arms control pact with Russia before it expires on Feb. 5, senior officials told the Washington Post.

Why it matters: The 2010 treaty is the last remaining constraint on the arsenals of the world's two nuclear superpowers, limiting the number of deployed nuclear warheads and the bombers, missiles and submarines which can deliver them.