Murkowski 'Disappointed' Secty. Zinke is Resigning

    Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke and Sen. Lisa Murkowski.

    Washington, D.C. (AP) - President Donald Trump tweeted Saturday that Zinke would be leaving the administration at year's end.

    Republican Sen. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska says she's disappointed that Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke is leaving, calling him a "strong partner for Western states."

    President Donald Trump tweeted Saturday that Zinke would be leaving the administration at year's end. Zinke had faced federal investigations and intensifying Democratic scrutiny into ethics allegations.

    Zinke's work at Interior included helping ease the way for more oil and gas exploration on public lands in Alaska.

    Zinke, 57, played a leading part in Trump's efforts to roll back federal environmental regulations and promote domestic energy development. He drew attention from his first day on the job, when he mounted a roan gelding to ride across Washington's National Mall to the Department of Interior.

    Zinke had remained an ardent promoter of both missions, and his own macho image, despite growing talk that he had lost Trump's favor.

    On Tuesday, Zinke appeared on stage at an Environmental Protection Agency ceremony for a rollback on water regulations. Mentioning his background as a Navy SEAL at least twice, he led the audience in a round of applause for the U.S. oil and gas industry.

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