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December 20, 2018 6:54 p.m.

This Week: Take A Closer Look At Zinke’s Deputy, Waiting In The Wings

Just like Scott Pruitt, Ryan Zinke had a deregulatory insurance policy in case of his resignation: A fossil fuel lobbyist waiting in the wings. President Donald Trump announced Saturday that Zinke would be out of his job as secretary of the Interior Department by the end of the year. Whoever Zinke’s replacement is — Trump said he would name a successor soon — the department will for the time being likely be left in the hands of the deputy secretary, David Bernhardt. Like Acting EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler, Bernhardt is a lawyer who used to lobby and work for the same industries and corporations he’s now tasked with policing, like Cobalt International Energy, Samson Resources, the Independent Petroleum Association of America and Halliburton, per the New York Times. Like Wheeler, he smartly avoids the spotlight, seeking for himself not a political career — like Pruitt and Zinke — but a deregulatory record that stands the test of time. The Washington…

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