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Zinke boasted a much-coveted endorsement from former President Donald Trump. Critics attacked Zinke for being moderate or soft on key Republican issues.
The former secretary won his nomination against former state senator Al Olszewski, the Associated Press reported. Zinke won the election by approximately 1,500 votes – an unexpectedly tight final count.
Trump officially endorsed Zinke on May 23. He mentioned Zinke by name at a political rally and urged his followers to vote for the former interior secretary.
Republican Ryan Zinke, who’s running for Congress, speaks at a ceremony to honor four airmen killed in a 1962 crash, on July 24, 2021, in Emigrant, Montana. (William Campbell/Getty Images)
“I’d like to ask each of you to get out and vote for Ryan,” Trump said during a rally that evening. “He’s a great friend of mine. He’s a great person with a great family, great everything.”
Trump cited Zinke’s years as interior secretary under his administration as evidence of his skills in leadership.
Trump continued, “It’s Montana’s first Congressional district, as everyone knows, and he was my interior secretary, as you know, and he did an incredible job in terms of energy dominance and also energy independence, and we actually became dominant and increased our federal energy revenues.”
Earlier this year, Zinke talked with “The Ingraham Angle” about what he called a series of poor decisions the Biden administration has made in regard to U.S. energy production and independence.
“The first two years of the Trump administration, we went from 8.3 million barrels a day in declining in just two years to 12.5 Million barrels a day, the world’s largest exporter of energy,” he said in the interview. “And it just wasn’t fossil fuels, it was across the board. So fast-forward now we have Russia and we should immediately ban Russian oil.”
Timothy Nerozzi is a writer for Fox News Digital. You can follow him on Twitter @timothynerozzi and can email him at firstname.lastname@example.org