Smitherman calls for Suspension and Investigation of EPA Administrator over Inflammatory Statements


AUSTIN –– Railroad Commission Chairman Barry Smitherman called on President Obama and EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson to suspend EPA Region VI Administrator after video of inflammatory statements was uncovered(video at

“EPA must immediately suspend Al Armendariz and investigate all of the enforcement actions taken since he took over as Administrator.  His outrageous, insensitive remarks demonstrate a clear bias against oil and gas producers.  This clearly taints enforcement actions that have occurred under his watch,” Smitherman said.

“It is also reckless for him to talk about ‘crucifying’ oil and gas companies like the Romans used to do to innocent citizens.  As a Christian, I find his use of a crucifixion analogy offensive.”

“The EPA’s job is to regulate based on science and fact.  This is just one more example of how Region VI Administrator Al Armendariz makes outrageous statements that clearly show his bias against those who produce domestic energy using our most abundant resources: oil and gas,” Smitherman concluded.

Smitherman sent a letter to President Obama and the National EPA Administrator in Washington D.C., outlining the case for suspension and investigation of Mr. Armendariz based on this statement and others he has made in the past.  A copy of the letter is available at


Chairman Barry Smitherman was appointed to the Railroad Commission of Texas in July 2011, and was elected Chairman in February 2012.  Chairman Smitherman currently serves as Texas’ representative on both the Interstate Oil and Gas Compact Commission and the Southern States Energy Board, and as Vice Chair of the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners’ Gas Committee. He is on the Visiting Committee of the Bureau of Economic Geology with the Jackson School of Geosciences at The University of Texas at Austin, The University of Texas School of Law Center for Global Energy, International Arbitration, and Environmental Law, and the Eanes Education Foundation Advisory Board.