The US Senate confirmed the New Mexico Democrat 51-40 after she clinched assist from Republicans together with South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham, Alaska Senators Lisa Murkowski and Dan Sullivan and Maine Senator Susan Collins.
Haaland grew to become one of many first two Native American ladies elected to Congress in 2018. Her ascension to the cupboard adopted weeks of campaigning by Native American tribes and environmental teams in assist of her historic appointment. She confronted resistance from Republican lawmakers who grilled her at a two-day listening to final month about her involvement in pipeline protests, her assist of the Inexperienced New Deal local weather decision, and the Biden administration’s pause on new federal drilling leases.
Haaland will oversee polices guiding use of 500 million acres of federal and tribal land, a fifth of the nation’s floor. A member of the Laguna Pueblo tribe, Haaland may even oversee the US authorities’s relationship with some 574 federally acknowledged tribal nations.
New Mexico Democratic Senator Ben Ray Lujan, who presided over the Senate throughout Monday’s vote, mentioned Haaland’s appointment sends a sign to younger Native Individuals.
“She’s the embodiment of the previous adage that in the event you see it you may be it,” he mentioned.
INDIAN COUNTRY WATCHES
Native Individuals watched Haaland’s affirmation vote in houses throughout Indian nation.
In interviews, two younger Native Individuals mentioned they hoped Haaland’s appointment will immediate the federal authorities to seek the advice of extra with tribes over points starting from environmental safety to policing.
“To me these environmental points are entangled with tribal sovereignty. Beneath her path I believe there’s a potential for addressing environmental racism,” mentioned Majerle Lister, 26, a Diné graduate pupil dwelling in Shiprock, New Mexico.
For New Mexico college pupil and neighborhood organizer Alysia Coriz, a 24-year previous Kewa Pueblo, Haaland’s rise is a reminder of challenges Native ladies face inside their very own communities.
“To ensure that our Pueblo ladies to rise to their potential and exceed it, they need to look exterior… I see Deb Haaland for instance,” mentioned Coriz.
Powerful balancing act
Senate Majority Chief Chuck Schumer mentioned Haaland’s appointment will assist restore the connection between the Inside Division and tribal nations the company has handled unfairly.
“Given the lengthy and troubled relationship between the federal authorities and tribal nations, the ascension of Rep. Haaland to the highest of the Inside Division is a profoundly necessary second for America,” Schumer mentioned earlier than the vote.
Megan Hill, a citizen of the Oneida Nation of Wisconsin and director of Harvard’s Undertaking on American Indian Financial Improvement, mentioned Haaland should now juggle many competing calls for, going through big expectations because of the historic nature of her appointment.
“Whereas she may have Cupboard-level decision-making energy, she’s going to face competing pursuits from defending the surroundings and elevating Indigenous priorities to managing calls for from large oil and local weather change deniers,” she mentioned.
Even earlier than her affirmation, the Inside Division has been shifting swiftly to reverse deregulatory actions of the previous Trump administration, equivalent to rollbacks of the Migratory Chicken Treaty.
Final week, Inside mentioned it would launch its overview of the federal oil and gasoline leasing program on March 25, serving to decide whether or not the Biden administration will completely halt new leases on federal land and water.
Forward of her affirmation, Haaland pledged to “be fierce” for all Individuals, vowing to advance insurance policies to sort out greenhouse gasoline emissions; some 25% of emissions come from burning fuels extracted from public lands and waters.