High-flying Interior Secretary Zinke took taxpayer-funded jets to Lake Tahoe, Virgin Islands, Norway

[ Originally published on this site as post ]

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke joins the growing list of Trump cabinet members who have been flying high on the taxpayer dime. 

In June, Zinke and his staffers took a four-hour flight from Las Vegas to Kalispell, Mont., aboard a private plane owned by the executives of a Wyoming oil-and-gas exploration firm, aviation and business records show.

The landing in Kalispell put Zinke a short drive from his home in Whitefish, Mont., where he spent the night, documents show.

The flight cost taxpayers $12,375, according to an Interior Department spokeswoman. Commercial airlines run daily flights between the two airports and charge as little as $300.

Get that, taxpayers? We paid $12,375 to oil and gas millionaires (or billionaires) to shuttle Ryan Zinke home for one night. All while he schemes to open up our national parks for oil and gas drilling, destroying sensitive ecological environment to further enrich Big Oil executives. And we paid them! It’s even worse—he was there to give a short speech and then do photo shoots of himself looking rugged for outdoor magazines. From Politico:

In Whitefish, Zinke attended the Western Governors’ Association’s annual meeting, where he spoke for about 20 minutes without taking questions. He then had a private lunch with association members. In the afternoon Zinke was the subject of a photo shoot with GQ magazine at Lake McDonald and fished while being interviewed by Outside Magazine, the records show.

But, wait! There’s more. We also paid for him to jet off to Lake Tahoe for a fancy-schmancy event to thank his biggest donor from the swamp.