Pruitt asked Trump to replace Sessions with him, report says

Ismael LynchJul 06, 2018

Democratic lawmakers are pushing the inspector general's office to investigate whether Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt may have violated the Federal Records Act with the use of "secret calendars" meant to hide parts of his day-to-day operations. Sarah Sanders was recently asked to leave a Virginia restaurant after the owner explained to the press secretary that "the restaurant has certain standards that I feel it has to uphold, such as honesty, and compassion, and cooperation".

Government investigators have been looking into Pruitt's renting of a Capitol Hill condominium linked to an energy lobbyist on favorable terms, the high cost of his travel and security detail and other accusations of mistreatment of employees, wasteful spending and unethical decisions.

Previous allegations have involved reports that Pruitt used his position and government resources to try to get his wife a Chick-fil-A franchise, a used mattress from a Trump hotel, and a deal on a room rental from a Washington lobbyist couple.

The growing ethical cloud around Pruitt ultimately grew too big for the Trump administration to handle, and Pruitt resigned on Thursday.

Pruitt, before taking the helm of the EPA, was the attorney general of Oklahoma and served two terms as chairman of RAGA, the Republican network for state attorneys general.

Mr. Trump says Deputy Director Andrew Wheeler will take over for Pruitt.

A spokesman for Pruitt said that he had thanked Mink and left because he was finished eating.

An EPA representative responded to the report, saying the agency "will not be commenting on anonymous sources who are working to distract Americans from the Trump Administration's accomplishments on regulatory certainty and environmental stewardship", CNN reported.

Environmentalists and public health advocacy groups have criticized Pruitt for trying to roll back Obama-era regulations that address water and air quality and climate change.

Even conservative commentary Laura Ingraham tweeted this week about how swampy Pruitt is, calling for him to go. He also had a $43,000 phone booth installed in his office.

Pruitt incurred a sizable number of investigations into his spending and practices at EPA, including inquiries by the House, Senate, the EPA itself and the White House. The anecdotes offered ammunition for critics of the now-outgoing EPA chief as a creature of the swamp Trump promised to drain.

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