search
Sections List
American Journal News

Zinke reassigned a third of Native American staffers to shut them up

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke has an appalling record of disrespecting Native Americans, and it just got much worse.

By Matthew Chapman - April 02, 2018
Share
Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke

Ryan Zinke’s management of the Department of the Interior has been horrible for Native Americans. Now, it seems Zinke may have a chilling strategy to silence criticism from within his own department: reassigning the Native Americans working there.

According to a report from Talking Points Memo, Zinke transferred more than 30 percent of senior officials with a tribal affiliation, “even though Native Americans make up less than 10 percent of the Department’s workforce.”

Furthermore, former government officials told TPM they viewed such reassignment “as part of an effort to remove internal opposition to Zinke’s plan to open up more tribal and public lands to the fossil fuel industry.”

This revelation comes as congressional Democrats are already demanding an investigation into whether such reassignment practices were discriminatory.

Zinke drew nationwide outrage last year when he reduced the size of Bears Ears National Monument in Utah. His decision, spurred largely by the lobbying of a uranium company, could open over one million acres of artifact-strewn ancestral Navajo land to drilling and mining.

He also lifted the moratorium on permits for coal extraction on public lands without consulting local tribes, who promptly sued.

Retaliating against Native Americans who opposed, or might oppose, this decision would not be out of character for Zinke. Last week, Interior officials revealed that he flatly said in a recent speech to his staff, “I don’t care about diversity” and he doesn’t “really think that’s important anymore.”

And in public, he has shown a cynically self-serving attitude toward the welfare of Native people, invoking them for his own ends. He even claimed that we should not remove Confederate white supremacist monuments because Native Americans might get offended.

For Zinke, the approach to Native relations appears to be “out of sight, out of mind.” And if his suspicious pattern of employee reassignments is any indication, that goes for his own people too.


AJ News
Get the latest news here first.

Tai News

Newsletter
Read More
Wisconsin Rep. Derrick Van Orden hit with ethics complaint

Wisconsin Rep. Derrick Van Orden hit with ethics complaint

By Jesse Valentine - January 30, 2024
 Republican Mazi Pilip supported spending COVID relief funds on golf tournaments

 Republican Mazi Pilip supported spending COVID relief funds on golf tournaments

By Jesse Valentine - January 22, 2024
Rep. Juan Ciscomani worked for governor who made Arizona water crisis worse

Rep. Juan Ciscomani worked for governor who made Arizona water crisis worse

By Jesse Valentine - January 19, 2024
Republican Tom Barrett has cozy ties with anti-union group

Republican Tom Barrett has cozy ties with anti-union group

By Jesse Valentine - January 17, 2024
 Republicans choose violence in bonkers day on Capitol Hill

 Republicans choose violence in bonkers day on Capitol Hill

By Jesse Valentine - November 16, 2023
House Speaker Mike Johnson has long opposed abortion and LGBTQ+ rights

House Speaker Mike Johnson has long opposed abortion and LGBTQ+ rights

By Amanda Becker, The 19th - November 02, 2023
AJ News
Latest
Republican Eric Hovde makes inconsistent statements about family history

Republican Eric Hovde makes inconsistent statements about family history

By Jesse Valentine - February 26, 2024
Republican David McCormick invests millions in website that platforms Holocaust denial

Republican David McCormick invests millions in website that platforms Holocaust denial

By Jesse Valentine - February 09, 2024
Lawmakers will again take up bills expanding, tightening gun laws

Lawmakers will again take up bills expanding, tightening gun laws

By Annmarie Timmins, New Hampshire Bulletin - January 31, 2024
UAW delivers rousing presidential endorsement for Biden over ‘scab’ Trump

UAW delivers rousing presidential endorsement for Biden over ‘scab’ Trump

By Ashley Murray, States Newsroom - January 24, 2024
Republicans Sam Brown and Jeff Gunter sling mud in Nevada senate primary

Republicans Sam Brown and Jeff Gunter sling mud in Nevada senate primary

By Jesse Valentine - January 17, 2024
A Young Texas Woman Almost Died Due To The Texas Abortion Bans – Now She’s Battling To Save Other Women

A Young Texas Woman Almost Died Due To The Texas Abortion Bans – Now She’s Battling To Save Other Women

By Bonnie Fuller - January 10, 2024
Health care legislation preview: Maryland advocates want to focus on access, patients in 2024 session

Health care legislation preview: Maryland advocates want to focus on access, patients in 2024 session

By Danielle J. Brown, Maryland Matters - January 08, 2024
How GOP senate hopefuls try to excuse the  January 6 insurrection

How GOP senate hopefuls try to excuse the  January 6 insurrection

By Jesse Valentine - January 05, 2024
NH lawmakers will be taking up major voting bills this year. Here are some to watch for.

NH lawmakers will be taking up major voting bills this year. Here are some to watch for.

By Ethan DeWitt, New Hampshire Bulletin - January 04, 2024
Republican US Senate candidates want to make Trump’s tax cuts permanent 

Republican US Senate candidates want to make Trump’s tax cuts permanent 

By Jesse Valentine - December 22, 2023
Rand Paul went all in on the Kentucky governor’s race. It didn’t work.

Rand Paul went all in on the Kentucky governor’s race. It didn’t work.

By - December 15, 2023
Texas governor and attorney general do little to curb state’s chemical plant crisis

Texas governor and attorney general do little to curb state’s chemical plant crisis

By Jesse Valentine - December 08, 2023
Likely GOP Senate candidate Eric Hovde proposed tax hike for poorer workers and retirees

Likely GOP Senate candidate Eric Hovde proposed tax hike for poorer workers and retirees

By Jesse Valentine - December 07, 2023
Whitmer signs specific criminal penalties for assaulting health care workers into law

Whitmer signs specific criminal penalties for assaulting health care workers into law

By Anna Liz Nichols, Michigan Advance - December 06, 2023
105 Republicans voted to expel Santos for things Trump has also done

105 Republicans voted to expel Santos for things Trump has also done

By Jesse Valentine - December 05, 2023
For Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, another Trump term is another chance to kill Obamacare

For Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, another Trump term is another chance to kill Obamacare

By Jesse Valentine - December 04, 2023
Florida Sen. Rick Scott backs Donald Trump in revived push to repeal Obamacare

Florida Sen. Rick Scott backs Donald Trump in revived push to repeal Obamacare

By Jesse Valentine - November 30, 2023
Tate Reeves took donations from power company that hiked customer rates

Tate Reeves took donations from power company that hiked customer rates

By Jesse Valentine - November 06, 2023
Daniel Cameron ran on depoliticizing the Kentucky AG’s office. He made it more political.

Daniel Cameron ran on depoliticizing the Kentucky AG’s office. He made it more political.

By Jesse Valentine - November 03, 2023
Republican operatives sound every alarm on current trajectory of 2023 governor’s race

Republican operatives sound every alarm on current trajectory of 2023 governor’s race

By Adam Ganucheau, Mississippi Today - October 24, 2023
Republican Bernie Moreno opposes existence of minimum wage

Republican Bernie Moreno opposes existence of minimum wage

By Jesse Valentine - February 23, 2024
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott floats building a wall on the Oklahoma border

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott floats building a wall on the Oklahoma border

By Jesse Valentine - February 22, 2024
More than 48,600 18-year-olds are registered to vote in Ohio, a 35% increase from late August

More than 48,600 18-year-olds are registered to vote in Ohio, a 35% increase from late August

By Megan Henry, Ohio Capital Journal - February 22, 2024
Not if, but when: Parents of slain Parkland students urge Utah lawmakers to pass school safety bill

Not if, but when: Parents of slain Parkland students urge Utah lawmakers to pass school safety bill

By Kyle Dunphey, Utah News Dispatch - February 21, 2024
Key takeaways from Monday’s U.S. Senate Ohio Republican primary debate

Key takeaways from Monday’s U.S. Senate Ohio Republican primary debate

By Nick Evans, Ohio Capital Journal - February 20, 2024