Fact Checking Claims that Biden Hired a Drag Queen to Work in the Department of Energy

Viral social media posts claim that President Joe Biden has hired a drag queen to head up the Department of Energy’s nuclear waste issues efforts.


These claims are largely true. Sam Brinton became deputy assistant secretary of Spent Fuel and Waste Disposition in the Energy Department’s Office of Nuclear Energy in January 2022. Before joining the Department of Energy, Brinton was most famous as an gender non-binary activist, and made headlines for wearing a gender-fluid outfit to the 2018 Academy Awards ceremony. The picture accompanying some of the posts is Brinton in the Academy Awards outfit

The Daily Mail reported that Brinton was a member of a drag queen group called the Order of Perpetual Indulgence, including a picture from Brinton’s Instagram account showing Brinton at a Sisters of the Order of Perpetual Indulgence event. 

The Department of Energy told the Washington Examiner that while Brinton was being considered for a career appointment, the role is not a political appointment. So, while Brinton is joining the Department of Energy, Brinton is not a “Biden nominee” as some have claimed. 

The Department of Energy told The Dispatch Fact Check that Brinton’s position is “not an appointment through the Biden-Harris administration,” but that it was “unable to comment on any additional personnel matters related to that post at the moment.”

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