December 15, 2018 11:37 am
Updated: December 15, 2018 2:01 pm

Interior secretary Ryan Zinke to be latest White House departure: Trump

WATCH: President Donald Trump announced on Twitter Saturday that U.S. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke would leave his post at the end of the year.

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U.S. President Donald Trump tweeted Saturday morning that Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke will be stepping down at the end of this 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. Ryan has accomplished much during his tenure and I want to thank him for his service to our Nation,” Trump said in the tweet.

In a follow-up a few minutes later, the president said that a new secretary of the interior would be announced by the end of the week.

“The Trump administration will be announcing the new secretary of the Interior next week,” Trump said on Twitter.

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Zinke has come under scrutiny for his use of security details, chartered flights and a real estate deal. The Interior Department’s inspector general initiated at least seven investigations against Zinke, while another federal investigative agency opened as many as six other inquiries into Zinke’s behaviour, Bloomberg reported.

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Having formerly served as a Navy SEAL and as a Montana congressman, Zinke became known in the administration for championing “United States energy dominance,” aligning himself with Trump’s energy agenda, Bloomberg continues.

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The departure follows Trump’s announcement on Dec. 8 that Chief of Staff John Kelly would be leaving at the end of this year, as well, adding another White House staffer to the administration’s long string of departures.

Trump announced Friday that former budget head Mike Mulvaney would be replacing Kelly upon his departure.

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