The irony is that Zinke and Trump have long called for action to exploit federal land that the Obama administration, which tended to prioritized environmental protection, denied. Now, Zinke is threatening that he will protect the environment if Murkowski doesn’t support a health care bill. The importance of oil to Alaska’s economy, especially as the petroleum market struggles with low prices, means Murkowski is likely paying attention.

Still, like many Trump team propositions, it’s hard not to see this as a bluff. Will one wayward health care vote have this White House lining up with the Sierra Club and the League of Conservation Voters when it comes to Alaska’s federal lands?

Don’t count on it.

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