It's fairly clear now why Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke tried (and failed) to replace the Interior Department's inspector general last week.
Deputy Inspector General Mary Kendall, who has been the acting inspector general since 1999, has referred one of her investigations of Ryan Zinke to the Department of Justice for a possible criminal investigation.
Mary Kendall, the acting inspector general of the Interior Department, is conducting at least three probes into Zinke’s conduct, but it was not clear which one had been sent to the Justice Department, the Washington Post said.
Among other investigations, Kendall is probing Zinke’s involvement in a Montana land deal and a decision not to grant two tribes approval to run a casino in Connecticut.
A senior White House official said the White House understands the DOJ investigation is looking into whether the secretary “used his office to help himself,” according to the Washington Post.
We don't know exactly what Kendall has referred to the Justice Department because Zinke has been under investigation for a over a dozen different reasons.
If Zinke has used his office for personal gain that would obviously be a scandal, but trying to replace Kendall while this was happening is a scandal in itself.
If Democrats regain control of oversight in Congress, they may be interested in investigating why Ryan Zinke tried to replace the government official investigating him with a political crony.