The path for Trump's choice to fill an open Federal Energy Regulatory Commission seat may be getting more complicated thanks to newly unveiled comments on renewable energy and fossil fuels.

Why it matters: It opens up the nominee to charges that he'll bring an ideological approach to the commission. "FERC is an independent agency whose regulators typically pride themselves on a 'fuel neutral' approach to energy regulation," writes Utility Dive's Gavin Bade.

Driving the news: Utility Dive obtained a video of remarks Bernard McNamee made in February while working for the conservative Texas Public Policy Foundation. They report that McNamee, a former DOE official, "sharply criticized renewable energy and environmental groups while calling for a 'unified campaign' to support fossil fuels. ... McNamee ... said fossil fuels are 'key to our way of life,' but renewable energy 'screws up the whole physics of the grid."

  • E&E News reports that the comments are already "roiling opposition" to the nomination.
  • The video is also surfacing at a time when the Trump administration is batting around ideas for aiding economically struggling coal-fired and nuclear power plants.

But, but, but: McNamee, in a statement released to both publications, said: "I recognize the significant role that renewables play in our energy mix, and I stand by my statement that if confirmed as a Commissioner, I would be an independent arbiter basing my decisions on the law and the facts, not politics."

Go deeper: Meet Trump's new FERC nominee

Go deeper

Gallup: Party preference swings dramatically in favor of Democrats

Photo: Jim Watson/AFP via Getty Images

Americans' political party preferences have swung sharply from a 2-point Republican advantage in January to an 11-point Democratic advantage in July, according to Gallup's monthly averages of telephone polls in 2020.

The big picture: The dramatic shift is more a product of fewer people identifying as Republican or Republican-leaning (down 8% since January) than gains among those who identify as Democratic or Democratic-leaning (up 5%).

Nancy Pelosi: "I yearn for other Republican presidents"

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) called on President Trump Thursday to exercise "the full power" of the Defense Production Act to meet coronavirus equipment needs and accused him of engaging in a "massive dereliction of duty" by ignoring science during the pandemic.

What she's saying: "I yearn for other Republican presidents," Pelosi said at a press conference. "While we may have disagreed on many points, but at least we had a shared commitment to the governance of our country."

54 mins ago - Technology

T-Mobile debuts free robocall-fighting service

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

T-Mobile announced Thursday it will offer ScamShield, a free scam-blocking service, to all T-Mobile, Metro and Sprint customers.

Why it matters: Robocalls remain the scourge of the industry, with billions of unwanted calls pummeling customers last year.