Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke Resents the Fact of the Doors

Image: Getty

Democratic Sen. Maria Cantwell asked Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke a very reasonable question on Tuesday while Zinke testified before a Senate committee on the White House’s proposed budget cuts and park entry fee hikes during peak season. How, Cantwell asked, could Zinke justify increasing fees when he had recently taken a $12,375 private jet to his home in Montana?

Here was Zinke’s somewhat less reasonable response—more of a koan, really—from the Associated Press:

“Well, first, insults and innuendos are misleading. I never took a private jet anywhere,” Zinke said, adding that all three flights he had taken on private planes as secretary were on aircraft driven by propellers, not jet engines.

Zinke also referenced a report last week by The Associated Press that the Interior Department is spending nearly $139,000 to upgrade three sets of double doors in his private office at the agency’s headquarters.

“I resent the fact of your insults, I resent the fact they’re misleading, I resent the fact of the doors,” Zinke said to Cantwell, the tone of his voice growing sharp. “And I’ll go through line by line. ... To allege that it’s a private jet is inappropriate, ma’am.”

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I resent the fact of the doors.

I resent the fact of the doors.

I resent the fact of the doors.

I resent the fact of the doors.

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I resent the fact of the doors.

I resent the fact of the doors.

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I resent the fact of the doors.

I resent the fact of the doors.

Henceforth, let it be known that Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke resents the fact of the doors.

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About the author

Ellie Shechet

Ellie is a freelance writer and former senior writer at Jezebel. She is pursuing a master's degree in science journalism at Columbia University in the fall.