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Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke to leave Trump administration at end of the year

WASHINGTON, DC - MAY 10: U.S. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke testifies beofre the Senate Appropriations Committee's Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies Subcommittee. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump says Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke, who is facing federal investigations into his travel, political activity and potential conflicts of interest, will leave the administration at year’s end.

Trump tweets that Zinke “accomplished much during his tenure” and that a replacement would be announced next week. The Cabinet post requires Senate confirmation.

Zinke, a former Republican congressman from Montana, is leaving weeks before Democrats take control of the House, a shift in power that promised to intensify probes into his conduct.

Zinke played a leading part in Trump’s efforts to roll back environmental regulations and promote domestic energy development.

His departure comes amid a staff shake-up as Trump heads into his third year in office. The president on Friday named budget director Mick Mulvaney as his “acting” chief of staff.

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