Kempthorne gives last speech as Interior secretary
Outgoing Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne defended his last-minute initiatives in his last major speech as a Bush administration official.

In December, the Interior Department finalized a controversial endangered species act regulation and made other changes to allow development without Congressional oversight. Kempthorne denied taking action without informing the public.

"If you're to play in the entire game, you're to do what you've been asked to do," Kempthorne said, the Associated Press reported. "Until Jan. 20, I am the secretary of Interior and I work for you. And I'm not just going to sit on the sidelines."

Kempthorne said he improved ethics behaviors at the department, which has been rocked by a series of scandals.

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