Scott Pruitt

Pruitt Justifies His First Class Air Travel

EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt “has broken months of silence about his frequent premium-class flights at taxpayer expense, saying he needs to fly first class because of unpleasant interactions with other travelers,” the AP reports.

Said Pruitt: “We live in a very toxic environment politically, particularly around issues of the environment. We’ve reached the point where there’s not much civility in the marketplace and it’s created, you know, it’s created some issues and the (security) detail, the level of protection is determined by the level of threat.”

Pruitt Once Called Trump an ‘Empty Vessel’

EPA administrator Scott Pruitt called Donald Trump an “empty vessel” on the Constitution and rule of law in a February 2016 interview with a local Oklahoma radio show, CNN reports.

Said Pruitt: “I think he’s an empty vessel when it comes to things like the Constitution and rule of law. I’m very concerned that perhaps if he’s in the White House, that there may be a very blunt instrument as the voice of the Constitution.”

Pruitt Predicted Trump Would Act Unconstitutionally

In a 2016 radio interview, EPA administrator Scott Pruitt said Donald Trump would “take, I think, unapologetic steps to use executive power to confront Congress in a way that is truly unconstitutional.”

Said Pruitt: “I believe that Donald Trump in the White House would be more abusive to the Constitution than Barack Obama — and that’s saying a lot… I really believe he would use a blunt instrument. This president at least tries to nuance his unlawfulness.”

Pruitt Eyes Attorney General Job

“Scott Pruitt, the administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, has told friends and associates that he’s interested in becoming attorney general,” Politico reports.

“With rumors swirling that Jeff Sessions could depart the administration and two members of the House Freedom Caucus calling on the former Alabama senator to resign, Pruitt is quietly positioning himself as a possible candidate for the job.”

Pruitt Meets Almost Exclusively with Industry Executives

New York Times: “It was just a typical day for Mr. Pruitt, the former Oklahoma attorney general. Since taking office in February, Mr. Trump’s E.P.A. chief has held back-to-back meetings, briefing sessions and speaking engagements almost daily with top corporate executives and lobbyists from all the major economic sectors that he regulates — and almost no meetings with environmental groups or consumer or public health advocates, according to a 320-page accounting of his daily schedule from February through May, the most detailed look yet at what Mr. Pruitt has been up to since he took over the agency.”

Extra Bonus Quote of the Day

“To have any kind of focus on the cause and effect of the storm; versus helping people, or actually facing the effect of the storm, is misplaced. To discuss the cause and effect of these storms, there’s the… place and time to do that, it’s not now.”

— EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt, telling CNN that talking about climate change would be “very, very insensitive” to the people of Florida.

Pruitt Carries Out EPA Agenda In Secret

“When career employees of the Environmental Protection Agency are summoned to a meeting with the agency’s administrator, Scott Pruitt, at agency headquarters, they no longer can count on easy access to the floor where his office is,” the New York Times reports.

“Doors to the floor are now frequently locked, and employees have to have an escort to gain entrance. Some employees say they are also told to leave behind their cellphones when they meet with Mr. Pruitt, and are sometimes told not to take notes.”

“Mr. Pruitt, according to the employees, who requested anonymity out of fear of losing their jobs, often makes important phone calls from other offices rather than use the phone in his office, and he is accompanied, even at E.P.A. headquarters, by armed guards, the first head of the agency to ever request round-the-clock security.”

EPA Chief Pushes Effort to Question Climate Change

“The Trump administration is debating whether to launch a governmentwide effort to question the science of climate change, an effort that critics say is an attempt to undermine the long-established consensus human activity is fueling the Earth’s rising temperatures,” the Washington Post reports.

“The move, driven by Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt, has sparked a debate among top Trump administration officials over whether to pursue such a strategy.”

“Energy Secretary Rick Perry, who once described the science behind human-caused climate change as a ‘contrived phony mess,’ also is involved in the effort.”

New York Times: “Pruitt has moved to undo, delay or otherwise block more than 30 environmental rules, a regulatory rollback larger in scope than any other over so short a time in the agency’s 47-year history.”

EPA Employees Trying to Block Pruitt

“Employees of the Environmental Protection Agency have been calling their senators to urge them to vote on Friday against the confirmation of Scott Pruitt, President Trump’s contentious nominee to run the agency, a remarkable display of activism and defiance that presages turbulent times ahead for the EPA,” the New York Times reports.

“Many of the scientists, environmental lawyers and policy experts who work in E.P.A. offices around the country say the calls are a last resort for workers who fear a nominee selected to run an agency he has made a career out of fighting — by a president who has vowed to ‘get rid of’ it.”

Democrats Boycott Vote on Trump’s EPA Pick

“Senate Democrats boycotted a committee vote on President Trump’s pick to lead the Environmental Protection Agency, preventing the GOP from moving his confirmation forward,” The Hill reports.

“None of the Democrats on the Environment and Public Works panel, led by Sen. Tom Carper (D-DE), went into the meeting room, depriving the committee of the two minority party members it requires for a quorum to vote on Scott Pruitt.”

Democrats tried to same tactic with the Senate Finance Committee, forcing the GOP to suspend the rules to allow a vote.

Oklahoma Attorney General Defends Bible Distribution

Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt (R) sent a letter to public school superintendents across the state vowing to defend religious freedom amid “veiled legal threats” over the distribution of Bibles on campus, Tulsa World reports.

Said Pruitt: “It is a challenging time in our country for those who believe in religious liberty. Our religious freedoms are under constant attack from a variety of groups who seek to undermine our constitutional rights and threaten our founding principles.”