Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Trump could tap another Hoosier native for cabinet

Posted By on Tue, Sep 20, 2016 at 4:05 PM

Forrest and Charlotte Lucas - LUCASCATTLECOMANY.COM
  • lucascattlecomany.com
  • Forrest and Charlotte Lucas
The interwebs are abuzz with rumors of the Trump campaign considering another Hoosier for a high profile position within The Donald’s administration.

POLITICO was the first to report Lucas Oil president and CEO Forrest Lucas on Trump’s short list for consideration to serve as secretary of the interior should Trump win the presidential election in November.

Lucas is an Indiana native who made his fortune developing Lucas Oil Products, Inc. The billionaire secured the naming rights to the stadium built for the Indianapolis Colts. Born and raised in southern Indiana, where he still maintains a home, the Lucas family is well known in the Hoosier state.

However what Hoosiers may not know about Lucas is that he is also a cattleman. He owns a large cattle ranch in Missouri. He also founded Protect the Harvest, an organization designed to counter the efforts of animal rights organizations, like the Human Society of the United States, and environmental lobby groups who oppose farming legislation that would negatively impact the environment and allow the inhumane treatment of animals.. Lucas’ position is that the preservation of nation’s food supply outweighs farming restrictions to protect environmental interests and that people have the right to treat any animal any way they choose.

“Protect the Harvest was created to defend and preserve the freedoms of American consumers, farmers, ranchers, outdoor enthusiasts, and animal owners,” according to the organization’s website. The website states that the interference of animal rights and anti-farming groups have created “the result is an America that is less free and less prosperous, with reduced access to affordable food.”

(We NUVO editors aren’t exactly sure how pet ownership and the humane treatment of animals in zoos and circuses affects the nation’s food supply, but whatever.)

As secretary of the interior, Lucas would be in charge of protecting and managing “the Nation's natural resources and cultural heritage; provides scientific and other information about those resources; and honors its trust responsibilities or special commitments to American Indians, Alaska Natives, and affiliated island communities,” according to the department’s own strategic plan.

The U.S. Department of the Interior is oversees many divisions involving our nation’s natural resources including the U.S. Geological Survey, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, National Park Service, and the Office of Surface Mining and the Bureau of Land Management to name a few. Everything from coal mining, oil drilling, water maintenance, public lands and more fall under the purview of the Interior Department.

Just the rumor of Lucas being considered for interior secretary has groups like the Sierra Club spinning in reaction.

"At this rate, Donald Trump’s cabinet meetings will be so oil-soaked that they’ll need fire retardant carpeting installed in the White House out of fear of setting the place on fire,” said Sierra Club National Political Director Khalid Pitts in an issued statement. “Putting an oil executive in charge of our public lands and precious coasts in places like North Carolina, Virginia, and Florida is a virtual guarantee that Trump’s promise to throw open season on drilling in our special places will come true if he’s elected."

While neither the Trump campaign nor Forrest Lucas have confirmed any conversations or offers, Trump has been cited as cited as saying he intends to bring more successful business owners into his cabinet if elected. And Forrest Lucas definitely fits that definition.

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