President Donald Trump campaigned on “draining the swamp” in Washington, but one swamp monster seems to have found its way to a Senate hearing on Thursday.
A woman seated behind acting Secretary of the Interior David Bernhardt donned a mask during the opening remarks at Bernhardt’s confirmation hearing before the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee.
Bernhardt’s past work as an oil and gas lobbyist has received scrutiny and claims of conflicts from a number of environmental groups. During his time as deputy secretary, The Washington Post reported that Bernhardt carried a small card with him to keep track of his long list of conflicts of interest.
Watch the video below, via C-SPAN:
Look in the background during Interior Secretary Nominee David Bernhardt's opening statement.
— CSPAN (@cspan) March 28, 2019
Rep. Don Beyer (D-Va.) shared a screenshot of the Senate hearing, joking that Bernhardt was the real “swamp monster” in the photo.
“But seriously, the US Senate should reject oil lobbyist David Bernhardt’s confirmation,” he added.
SPOTTED in the US Senate: a swamp monster!
Also a person wearing a green mask, who appears to be concerned that the swamp monster could be confirmed as the next Secretary of the Interior.
But seriously, the US Senate should reject oil lobbyist David Bernhardt's confirmation. pic.twitter.com/4GgvWua0Ly
— Rep. Don Beyer (@RepDonBeyer) March 28, 2019
“Can you spot the swamp monster?” the Natural Resources Defense Council tweeted.
Can you spot the swamp monster?
Trump said he’d “drain the swamp” but he’s trying to put David Bernhardt—a former oil lobbyist!—in charge of @Interior.
— NRDC 🌎 (@NRDC) March 28, 2019
Public Citizen, a progressive consumer advocacy group, claimed Bernhardt has “more conflicts of interest than [former EPA Administrator Scott] Pruitt, [former Interior Secretary Ryan] Zinke, [former Health and Human Services Secretary Tom] Price and [former Veterans Affairs Secretary David] Shulkin combined.”
It looks like a swamp monster is trolling Interior nominee and former oil lobbyist David Bernhardt at his confirmation hearing.
Fun fact: Bernhardt has more conflicts of interest than Pruitt, Zinke, Price and Shulkin combined. pic.twitter.com/Gg3mR8dL4A
— Public Citizen (@Public_Citizen) March 28, 2019
The “swamp monster” was reportedly escorted out of the hearing shortly before noon.