The Interior Department inspector general has opened a probe into a real estate deal involving a foundation that Secretary Ryan Zinke established and a development company owned by Halliburton oil company chairman David Lesar. Politico reports that House Democrats requested the IG look into the deal, in which the foundation hired Lesars developers to build a parking lot there to benefit a major redevelopment project that could raise the land value of Zinkes nearby properties. As secretary, Zinke oversees oil drilling within the U.S., and Halliburton is one of the worlds largest fracking and offshore drilling services companies. While Zinkes wife, Lola, who took over the foundation after Zinke got the job as secretary, signed off on the deal, House Democrats asked if Zinke was using his position for personal gain in the deal. The secretary was previously investigated for his previous use of chartered flights, for giving a speech to a donors hockey team, and for attending fundraisers in the Virgin Islands.
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