>> Do you accept that climate change is part of->> Another high-ranking official departing the White House. President Trump announcing on Twitter Saturday that US Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke will be leaving the administration at the end of the year. The president adding, quote, Ryan has accomplished much during his tenure and I want to thank him for his service to our nation.
The former Navy Seal and Montana Congressman worked aggressively to promote Trump's agenda of expanding domestic energy production. While Trump did not give a reason for the departure during his two years in office, Zinke faced more than a dozen investigations over allegations that he violated ethics rules. Zinke was probed in connection with a land deal he forged in Whitefish Montana with Halliburton's chairman.
He also came under scrutiny for allowing his wife to ride in government vehicles. And for traveling with the security detail on a vacation to Turkey. On Saturday, Zinke tweeted, quote, I cannot justify spending thousands of dollars defending myself and my family against false allegations. Zinke just the latest in a series of top level exits from the Trump White House.
On Friday, Trump appointed budget director Mick Mulvaney as acting Chief of Staff, replacing John Kelly. The President said he will announce the new Secretary of the Interior next week