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Trump Swamp
weekly primer
August 23, 2018 6:37 p.m.

This Week: Ryan Zinke’s High School Football Teammate Reviews Research Grant Applications

Sometimes we have a hard time defining “Trump Swamp.” (It’s the sabotage of the Executive Branch by the people in charge.) Sometimes, defining it is easy. A high school football teammate of Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke must approve all “grants and cooperative agreements” above $50,000. Steve Howke has a bachelor’s degree in business administration, the Guardian reports, and prior to occupying this government job — the sole purpose of which now seems to be interfering with the funding of crucial scientific research — he’d “spent his entire career working in credit unions.” The Washington Post first reported the politicized science review process in January, complete with receipts. The Guardian has surveyed the damage done. Zinke, apparently, also tried to get away with selling off more than 1,600 acres of public land, despite repeated pledges not to. He was caught red-handed and backed off. President George W. Bush’s Veterans Affairs secretary “found it astounding” that three men whose only qualification was their…

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