President-elect Donald Trump has tapped Rep. Ryan Zinke, R-Montana, for secretary of the interior, a top transition source told NBC News on Tuesday.
Zinke, 55, a member of the House Natural Resources Committee who's described as an avid hunter and fisherman, was an early and consistent supporter of Trump's presidential campaign and was re-elected to a second term last month as Montana's sole representative in the House.
If Trump carries through with the appointment, Zinke's nomination would have to be confirmed by the Senate.
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The Interior Department oversees management of about three-quarters of federal land and natural resources, along with programs relating to American Indian and territorial affairs.
Zinke is a strong supporter of coal, oil and gas exploration and development with a 3 percent rating from the League of Conservation Voters, an environmental advocacy group. But he is also described as an enthusiastic outdoorsman, and he has backed increased funding to preserve open spaces.