Earlier this week, we reported that former State Senator John Watkins had withdrawn his name to serve on the SCC and endorsed David Clarke instead. But at least one conservationist organization objects.
Clarke is a prominent Richmond attorney and lobbyist who has strong support in the Republican House caucus. But the Virginia League of Conservation Voters released a statement yesterday (6/13/18) saying their poll shows the public doesn’t want someone on the SCC who has represented industries that it regulates.
University of Richmond Law Professor Carl Tobias said, “We often hear about this when someone goes on the bench whether it is state or federal level and that is essentially what the commissioners are. Can they separate their roles as judges from their prior roles as advocates for certain interests. Legislators will have to ask themselves about that question.”
If they don’t act, it would fall to the Governor to make the appointment.