“President” Donald J. Trump has appointed people to his cabinet who have been shameless in their lack of ethics or probity. While Trump asserts that there has to be decorum in the White House and in our political discourse, his administration continues to represent a vulgar, crude, base gaggle of ne’er-do-wells and miscreants.
The latest act of incredible conduct and rumor mongering comes from Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke. Congressman Raul Grijalva, ranking member of the House Committee on Natural Resources, opined that Zinke was unfit to serve and must resign, based on scandals and nepotism that Zinke is involved in. Zinke responded in this manner:
“It’s hard for him to think straight from the bottom of a bottle. This coming from a man who used nearly $50,000 in tax dollars as hush money to cover up his drunken and hostile behavior. 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.”
Zinke is referring to a drinking problem that Grijalva admitted to in 1985. Previously, the Washington Times had reported a 2015 deal that Grijalva struck with a woman who had worked for Grijalva for a short period of time. However, the tweet that Zinke has published deals in rumor. For a current cabinet member to be engaging in such conduct would be surprising in any other administration, but this team of bottom feeders leaves no room for surprises.
What Grijalva wrote about in his USA Today op-ed were various issues that have come up that involved Zinke and his personally enriching himself while in the role. Notably absent from Zinke’s response is any denial of the alleged misconduct that he has engaged in, which is not surprising. In January, when Grijalva likely becomes chair of the committee, Zinke’s actions will be investigated, and his spreading of old rumors will not help his cause.