Trump taps David Bernhardt for Interior secretary post

By Kathryn Watson

/ CBS News

Ryan Zinke to resign

President Trump says he'll nominate Acting Interior Secretary David Bernhardt to take the job permanently. Mr. Trump announced the nomination in a tweet Monday.

"I am pleased to announce that David Bernhardt, Acting Secretary of the Interior, will be nominated as Secretary of the Interior," the president tweeted. "David has done a fantastic job from the day he arrived, and we look forward to having his nomination officially confirmed!"

Bernhardt replaces former Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke, who stepped down amid multiple congressional investigations.

Bernhardt is a former lobbyist for the oil, gas and water industries, a point that has drawn criticism from environmentalists.

Bernhardt will still have go to through the formal confirmation process in the Senate.

"It's a humbling privilege to be nominated to lead a Department whose mission I love, to accomplish the balanced, common sense vision of our president," Bernhardt tweeted in response to the president's announcement.

Bernhardt has kept a relatively low profile in the weeks since taking the acting position. He did appear with Mr. Trump and Vice President Mike Pence in a very brief visit to the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial on MLK Day last month.

This is a developing story and will be updated.

First published on February 4, 2019

© 2019 CBS Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Kathryn Watson

Kathryn Watson is a politics reporter for CBS News Digital.

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