Montana’s sole Member of Congress, Rep. Ryan Zinke, was named by President-elect Donald Trump as the next Interior Secretary. Trump pivoted to Zinke after issues arose with Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, who earlier this week was rumored to be his pick.
Zinke, an avid hunter and angler and outdoorsman, supports public lands staying in federal ownership. As for climate change, in recent comments, he indicated he doesn’t believe it’s a hoax but, “it’s not a proven science either.” However, in 2010 when he was in the Montana state house, he signed onto a letter calling climate change a “threat multiplier” that “presents significant national security challenges for the United States.” The letter also referred to clean energy development and climate change solutions as “America’s new space race,” and called on Congressional leaders to enact climate legislation.
The Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership is “supportive” of Zinke’s nomination. The organization’s president praised his “courage and commitment to public lands and conservation” and said he “is someone we think would be an excellent secretary of Interior.”