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Scott Pruitt's Problems Aren't Going Away

Scott Pruitt's Problems Aren't Going Away

The federal government's top ethics official wrote to the Environmental Protection Agency's top ethics official this week asking the office to look into news reports from the last two weeks that have raised questions about whether administrator Scott Pruitt violated any ethical guidelines since he took the helm at the EPA.

In the letter, Acting Director of the Office of Government Ethics David Apol calls on the EPA's ethics office to review and analyze reports about Pruitt's living arrangement in a Capitol Hill townhouse connected to lobbyists, his travel and security expenses, and reports that he retaliated against staff that raised objections to some of his decisions.

Later, the EPA official, Kevin Minoli, said that he was referring the inquiry to the department's inspector general, which carries investigative powers that the ethics office does not.

The letter said news of Pruitt's frequent trips back to his home state of Oklahoma with related taxpayer spending "raise concerns about whether the administrator is using his public office for personal gain in violation of ethics rules". An EPA spokesman claimed that Pruitt was unaware of some of these extravagant outlays and rejected the notion that concerned staffers had been punished, but the administrator has already shown what his denials are worth.

Political observers say Scott Pruitt has become a lightning rod in the Trump administration after he was picked to lead the Environmental Protection Agency after fighting its controversial policies as Oklahoma attorney general.

Tweeting on Saturday, Trump wrote: "While Security spending was somewhat more than his predecessor, Scott Pruitt has received death threats because of his bold actions at EPA". The OGE does not have authority to take action with respect to any possible violation, according to CNN. Taxpayers still covered the airfare for the administrator's security detail. "He is moving forward exactly as this president said he would".

The Associated Press reported Friday that EPA has spent about $3 million on Pruitt's security measures, which included flying first-class and using a full-time security detail of 20 armed officers.

Raid on his lawyer abuses attorney-client privilege
The White House cited a need to remain in the United States to monitor the USA response to a suspected chemical attack in Syria. Officials from the Southern District declined to comment on the recusal, which was first reported by ABC News.

Jackson's statement, first reported by The Atlantic, came in response to a Monday report in the magazine that an internal EPA email from Greenwalt stated that Pruitt personally approved of her raise.

On Tuesday afternoon the E.P.A. acknowledged that the agency official who had signed off on the February assessment questioning Mr. Pruitt's security threats had been dismissed. More than ever, it is clear that Pruitt is unfit to serve. One of them fought buying Pruitt a $100,000-per-month charter aircraft membership, spending $70,000 to replace two office desks and wasting $43,000 on a soundproof booth in the administrator's office.

"They may think they can yell fake news - those 30-second ads are going to be so devastating that Republicans are going to bleed support in the fall and they're not going to be able to do anything about it", he continued.

Walter Shaub, who until past year ran the Office of Government Ethics, told the AP it was likely an ethics violation if Pruitt accepted the airline tickets, even if Wagner didn't pay cash for them.

The EPA did not respond to a request for comment.

Pruitt is rewriting the record book for shameless government corruption.


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