Lone Montana congressman and former Navy SEAL Ryan Zinke has been confirmed as the next Secretary of the Department of Interior. The Associated Press confirmed this:
BREAKING: Senate panel approves President Donald Trump's pick of Montana Rep. Ryan Zinke to serve as Interior secretary.
— AP Politics (@AP_Politics) January 31, 2017
Zinke was confirmed in a Senate subcommittee by a 16-6 vote. The U.S. Senate will soon vote to fully confirm him. Zinke will replace outgoing Interior head Sally Jewell, who previously served as CEO of REI.
I previously wrote about Zinke here at The Resurgent. Here’s more about him:
Zinke has voted to preserve Montana’s public lands for fishing, hunting, and use by outdoor enthusiasts. He also sat on the House Committee for Natural Resources. Zinke is also a strong supporter of the Second Amendment.
During confirmation hearings last week, Zinke said humans may contribute to climate change but said there’s debate to still be had on the topic. Perhaps he said it to get confirmed? I believe so – so as to not be blocked by Senate Democrats.
The Department of Interior is primarily responsible for natural resources–including oil and gas. In contrast to the previous administration, we can expect the safe exploration of offshore oil under a Zinke-led Department of Interior. Moreover, since the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service falls under the purview of DoI, we can expect its new director – who’ll work in concert with Zinke – to undo Order 219, which prohibits lead tackle and ammunition use on USFWS public lands.
Here’s to hoping true conservation can finally be promoted! Good luck to future Secretary Zinke. The special election for the open Montana seat is expected to be interesting…