Just sneaking them out of Florence cost a pretty penny, tell you what.

The Interior Department spent $139,000 last year for a little renovation project that was absolutely necessary for the safety and security of Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke, but damned if the mean old liberal media isn't presenting it as some kind of wasteful spending on par with Zinke's spendy helicopter adventures and jetting off to Alaska to visit a steakhouse. But the thing is, Zinke's office really needs some new doors, man, and they tie the whole office together.

We suppose we can get that some door renovations might be in order at Interior HQ, since the building was built in 1938. Spokesperson Heather Swift says the current double doors from the hallway to Zinke's office don't lock, so that's a real thing, and the double doors from inside the office to what WaPo calls "a corner balcony with a spectacular view of the Washington Monument and the National Mall" leak like anything whenever it rains, so workers have to come in and mop up the wooden floors in the secretary's office. Fair enough. And while they're at it, they may as well replace a set of doors from the office to "a hallway that features painted portraits of previous Interior secretaries."

Also, too, this is totally the fault of stupid Washington liberals, historical preservationists, and almost certainly Barack Obama, since renovations at Interior have been underway for about a decade, according to Ms. Swift:

“The secretary was not aware of this contract but agrees that this is a lot of money for demo, install, materials and labor,” Swift said Thursday in an emailed statement. “Between regulations that require historic preservation and outdated government procurement rules, the costs for everything from pencils to printing to doors is astronomical. This is a perfect example of why the secretary believes we need to reform procurement processes.”

Swift added that the dates on an online invoice that a watchdog group called attention to were incorrect, and the doors have not yet actually been replaced.

The company contracted to replace the three sets of doors, you'll be relieved to know, is not located in Whitefish, Montana. It's a Maryland outfit called Conquest Solutions LLC, and they've done a number of (or done a number on a number of) renovation projects at other Washington buildings. The company doesn't seem especially enthusiastic to answer questions about how three sets of double doors, even in an old Washington office building, ended up costing as much as a used Bentley with decent mileage:

A man who answered the phone at the company Thursday hung up when a reporter asked about Zinke’s office.

Still, it should be noted that these are some pretty good doors:

The new balcony doors will be made of fiberglass specially made by Conquest Solutions and include glass transoms above the doors and fiberglass door frames, the official said.

It's not clear what makes the interior Interior doors (as opposed to the exterior Interior doors) so special. If they were being installed over at the EPA, we'd assume they have special listening device detectors and lasers to keep out unwanted members of the public. Perhaps the doors for Interior require advanced facial-recognition technology, to ensure that when Zinke leaves the building, the Official Secretary's Flag can be lowered.

Or maybe they just need to be reinforced so Zinke can ride his horse into the building just like Caligula.

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Doktor Zoom

Doktor Zoom's real name is Marty Kelley, and he lives in the wilds of Boise, Idaho. He is not a medical doctor, but does have a real PhD in Rhetoric. You should definitely donate some money to this little mommyblog where he has finally found acceptance and cat pictures. He is on maternity leave until 2033. Here is his Twitter, also. His quest to avoid prolixity is not going so great.

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