DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – U.S. Energy Secretary Rick Perry said he’s staying in the Trump administration.
Perry’s comments come after a report last week by Bloomberg News that he is planning to leave his post but that his departure isn’t imminent.
During an interview Thursday evening in Dallas, Perry told CBS 11 News political reporter Jack Fink, “I’m a day closer for coming home to Texas for good. But it’s not today and it’s certainly not tomorrow. You’ll see me around in this role for some time.”
Perry said he has not discussed the matter with President Trump, but that the President knows he enjoys working with him and in his administration. “This is not the best job I’ve ever had. That was Governor. But it’s the most interesting job I’ve ever had. I tell people it’s the coolest job I ever had to be at the Department of Energy.”
Perry, the longest-serving governor in Texas, came to Dallas to be one of the featured speakers at a banquet during Earth X. The annual Dallas event is billed as the world’s largest environmental expo, conference, and film festival celebrating Earth Day and developing solutions for environmental problems.
Billionaire businessman and environmentalist Trammell Crow founded the event in 2011. Perry said, “What Trammell Crow has put together is a great tribute not only to the state and the city of Dallas and the area, but nationally and internationally.”
His visit comes as AAA Texas found gasoline prices rose four cents in the Lone Star State last week to an average of $2.62 for a gallon of regular unleaded.
Some analysts believe what’s responsible for the price hike is the Trump administration’s announcement this week that it will tighten sanctions against Iran by no longer granting waivers to countries that import oil from the terrorist regime.
In a news release, Daniel Armbruster, AAA Texas/New Mexico spokesman said, “As the U.S. further blocks Iranian oil exports, global supplies are expected to continue tightening and retail gas prices will likely keep going up.”
When asked about the sanctions, Perry said, “Markets are always affected by what goes on politically. I think the President is absolutely correct sending the message to Iran that we’re not going to stand-by and let them be the bad neighbor they are and continue to fund the terrorism we know they are continuing to fund. The goal here is to make sure that there is a steady supply and that we don’t have any of these peaks up and down. Obviously, with the Iranian sanctions going into place, I think the market pretty well has addressed that.”
The Energy Secretary had a different explanation for rising prices. “Partly, it’s a seasonal thing. We’re into that period of time where summer driving is going to start happening, where we change over the formulazation. You look back historically, there’s always been a bump up.”
The Trump administration said the U.S. is now the world’s leading producer of oil and natural gas and that next year, it expects to become a net energy exporter.
For the first time since 1960, the U.S. Energy Information Agency estimates the nation will be a net exporter of gasoline between this month and the end of September.