With Pruitt’s Departure, More Than A Quarter of Trump’s Cabinet Has Changed

Katie Ramirez
July 10, 2018

In response to the resignation, Michael Brune, executive director of the Sierra Club, calls Pruitt "the worst EPA administrator in history".

Meanwhile, activists argued Mr Pruitt's policies of moving to boost fossil fuel production and rollback regulations opposed by corporate interests had endangered the environment.

Trump said Pruitt's deputy, the former coal lobbyist Andrew Wheeler, would take over Monday as acting head of the agency.

Pruitt, a former Oklahoma attorney general, has been under scrutiny for months amid reports involving questionable spending on first-class plane tickets, use of security detail, connections with lobbyists and industry groups, and use of his office for favors.

He was also instrumental past year in lobbying Trump to withdraw the United States from the global 2015 Paris climate accord to combat global warming. She was referring to allegations that Pruitt ignored all but his own political appointees at the agency, and used his office for personal gain.

"We appreciate Scott Pruitt's hard work to promote smarter regulations and streamline the permitting process", said Michael Tadeo, a spokesman for the American Petroleum Institute. Wheeler said Trump "hasn't been that successful" in his business endeavors and had "more baggage then all of the other Republican candidates combined". A Senate vote would be required if he is nominated to lead the agency permanently.

A former aide to Pruitt questioned his alleged practice of deleting meetings from his public calendar retroactively and claimed she was sacked for questioning this practice, The New York Times reported Thursday.

What McConnell reportedly said about Trump's potential Supreme Court nominees
Ilyse Hogue, president of the pro-abortion organization Naral, told Fox News Sunday that Trump had changed the rules of the game. While that argument won't sway Republicans, their strategy could stiffen Democratic resolve to oppose the nominee.

But many conservatives say Pruitt's policies were a huge success for the American economy because they helped industries that were hurt by the environmental regulations. Jim Inhofe, an Oklahoma Republican who, in an interview with CNN past year in March, accused the EPA of "brainwashing" American children.

Trump said on Twitter he accepted Pruitt's resignation, adding the former Oklahoma attorney general "has done an outstanding job, and I will always be thankful to him for this".

Senator Kamala Harris, Democrat from California:"Just because Scott Pruitt resigned doesn't mean we've forgotten about the taxpayer funds he's misused or the damage he's done to our environment. So when you're weakening these types of things, you're putting more people's lives at risk", Ali said.

Travel records showed the USA government spent $17,000 in taxpayer money on a December trip to Morocco to promote US exports of liquefied natural gas, which is not part of the EPA's jurisdiction. Pruitt said his staff never told him the cost.

Pruitt is already facing at least 14 federal probes regarding his spending, management and ethics.

His job had been in jeopardy since it emerged he had leased a property previous year that was co-owned by the wife of a veteran fossil fuels lobbyist, whose firm had sought regulatory rollbacks from the EPA. Before that, it was reported he dispatched staffers to fetch his preferred lotion from the Ritz-Carlton hotel, and tried to get his wife a Chik-fil-A franchise.

During congressional testimony in April, Mr Pruitt was unapologetic, often blaming his staff for any agency missteps.

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