Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke to Leave His Post at the End of the Year

Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke speaks after an order withdrawing federal protections for countless waterways and wetland was signed, at EPA headquarters in Washington, Tuesday, Dec. 11, 2018. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen)

President Trump announced Saturday that Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke will be stepping down from his post at the end of the year.

“Secretary of the Interior @RyanZinke will be leaving the Administration at the end of the year after having served for a period of almost two years,” he tweeted. “Ryan has accomplished much during his tenure and I want to thank him for his service to our Nation.”

Trump added that he would announce Zinke’s replacement by the end of next week.

Bloomberg News, which first reported Zinke’s resignation, reported that candidates who could replace him could include David Bernhardt, Zinke’s deputy, as well as former Nevada Sen. Dean Heller, and former Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker.

Zinke, a former Montana congressman and U.S. Navy Seal, had been dogged by ethics complaints related to his travel as well as a real estate deal in his home state involving a foundation he created and the chairman of the energy giant Halliburton that does business with Interior.

Multiple media reports have indicated the Interior Department’s watchdog, Inspector General Mary Kendall, has referred that probe to the Justice Department for possible criminal charges.

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Source: Fox News