House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell Issa, R-Calif., issued the following statement on the announcement that Secretary Steven Chu is leaving his post at the Department of Energy:
"While I wish Secretary Chu well in his future endeavors and respect his contributions to his country as a scientist, the direction the Department of Energy has taken under his leadership has been disconcerting. While many will remember Secretary Chu for his comments about the need to raise gas prices on American consumers and the high grades he publicly bestowed on himself, I found taxpayer losses on projects like Solyndra and the Department's deeply misguided effort to use taxpayer dollars as an investment bank for unproven technologies to be the most problematic aspects of his legacy.
"Uncovered e-mails from Department employees, sent in violation of the Federal Records Act, even raised fundamental questions about rogue operators at the center of the Department's controversial loans program engaging in an intentional effort to hide discussions from oversight. The e-mails revealed a culture that looked to White House officials, and not the Secretary, as key decision makers on loan issues for politically connected companies seeking assistance. The next Secretary of Energy will need to refocus the Department on removing barriers for the safe use of proven technologies that can quickly lower the costs of energy for all Americans and reduce our dependence on foreign sources."