- Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke slammed Democratic Rep. Raúl Grijalva as a drunk after the congressman threatened to probe his department when Democrats take the House majority in January.
- Grijalva is the likely incoming chairman of the House Natural Resources Committee and called for Zinke’s resignation in an op-ed.
Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke slammed a Democratic congressman, labelling him as a problem drinker on Friday in response to an op-ed calling for his resignation.
Arizona Rep. Raúl Grijalva, who is slated to serve as the next chairman of the House Natural Resources Committee when the 116th Congress convenes in January, wrote an op-ed for USA Today outlining why he believes Zinke is unfit to helm the Department of the Interior.
Grijalva also pledged to vigorously investigate and probe Zinke’s department in the new year.
Zinke responded to Grijalva in a statement on Friday.
— Secretary Ryan Zinke (@SecretaryZinke) November 30, 2018
“It’s hard for him to think straight from the bottom of the bottle,” Zinke said in the statement. “This is coming from a man who used nearly $US50,000 in tax dollars as hush money to cover up his drunken and hostile behaviour. He should resign and pay back the taxpayer for the hush money and the tens of thousands of dollars he forced my department to spend investigating unfounded allegations.”
The statement referenced a $US50,000 settlement reported last year, in which Grijalva paid off a former staffer after allegations that he was routinely drunk and created a hostile work environment.
Zinke also used the hashtag #TuneInnForMore when posting the statement to Twitter. The Tune Inn is small tavern on Pennsylvania Ave. just west of the US Capitol.
During his tenure in Congress before joining the Trump administration, Zinke had served on the Natural Resources Committee with Grijalva.
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