Scott Pruitt, Embattled Environmental Protection Agency Chief, Resigns

06 July, 2018, 18:28 | Author: Gregory Stephens
  • White House looking into Scott Pruitt using staff for personal use

US President Donald Trump on Thursday announced the departure of his environment chief, Scott Pruitt, who faced ever-growing scandals over his spending and conduct in office.

"I have accepted the resignation of Scott Pruitt as the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency", Trump announced on Twitter. "I have no doubt that Andy will continue on with our great and lasting EPA agenda", Trump wrote.

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

"I have no doubt that Andy will continue on with our great and lasting EPA agenda", the United States leader tweeted.

Though Trump promised he would drain the swamp when he took over the White House, Pruitt set new swampy records in town, which is saying a lot.

Pruitt was at the White House with other cabinet members on Wednesday evening, celebrating the Fourth of July and watching fireworks.

Democrats had been gunning for Pruitt even before the former Oklahoma attorney general was nominated to head the EPA, however, mobilizing protesters on social networks by using the hashtag #PollutingPruitt and accusing him of having ties with the oil and coal industries.


As of June, Pruitt was the subject of at least 14 federal investigations, according to The Guardian. And Pruitt reinforced some of Trump's strongest-held beliefs: that climate change was a hoax, that Attorney General Jeff Sessions was not serving him well and that the United States had been ripped off by worldwide trade partners, curent and former officials said. Environmental groups expressed dismay when he joined the federal agency, and Pruitt has since sought to roll back various environmental regulations, including Obama-era vehicle emission standards.

It's unlikely that much will change at the EPA under Wheeler, who holds similar conservative views about environmental regulations as Pruitt. Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price resigned past year after it was reported he spent taxpayer funds on charter flights.

Wheeler also worked as an energy sector lobbyist, perhaps most notably for Murray Energy Company, one of the nation's largest coal mining companies, according to The Washington Post. But Hart was later forced to admit he had met with Pruitt at EPA headquarters last summer after his firm, Williams & Jensen, revealed he had lobbied the agency on a required federal disclosure form.

Scott Pruitt may turn out to be a seminal case in the study of crisis management: Just how bad does an exec's public image have to get before they finally resign?

The praise for Pruitt was far from universal. "We must continue to fight the fossil-fuel entrenched interests that have gripped the EPA and want to undermine the public's health and progress on climate action".

During his time as a congressional staffer, Wheeler worked as a senior aide to Republican Sen.

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