WASHINGTON — The Latest on the controversy and the Senate vote on the Trump administration’s nominee for the No. 2 position at the Interior Department (all times local):

6:40 p.m.

The Senate has approved David Bernhardt, a lawyer/lobbyist from Colorado, as deputy Interior secretary, second in command to Interior Secretary Ryan ZInke.

The Senate confirmed Bernhardt’s nomination by President Donald Trump Monday, 53 – 43.

Democrats criticized Bernhardt, a former Interior official under President George W. Bush, saying he continued to advise a California water district even after he withdrew his formal registration as a lobbyist last year.

Republicans called Bernhardt a capable lawyer with vast experience in issues important to the West, including endangered species, water use and development of public lands. Bernhardt was Interior’s top lawyer in the Bush administration.

A spokeswoman said Zinke was “excited to have David Bernhardt, a highly-qualified, veteran official, return to the department to help advance ‘America First’ policy priorities” set by Trump.


3 a.m.

Democrats and environmental groups are criticizing President Donald Trump’s nominee for the No. 2 position at the Interior Department.

They argue that David Bernhardt has continued to advise a California water district even after he withdrew his formal registration as a lobbyist last year.

Democratic Sen. Maria Cantwell says Bernhardt’s nomination flies in the face of Trump’s pledge to “drain the swamp” in Washington of influence peddlers. Cantwell says that by selecting Bernhardt, Trump is “actually helping to fill” the metaphorical swamp.

The Senate is scheduled to vote Monday night on the nomination of Bernhardt, a lawyer and former Interior official under President George W. Bush.

If confirmed, as expected in the Republican-led Senate, Bernhardt would serve as the top deputy to Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke.