Watch a Woman Confront EPA Chief Scott Pruitt at Lunch

Leroy Wright
July 6, 2018

WASHINGTON -Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt has resigned after months of ethics controversies, President Donald Trump tweeted Thursday.

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) chief Scott Pruitt arrives to testify before the House Energy and Commerce Committee after ethics scandals April 26, 2018 on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C.

The president announced Mr. Pruitt's resignation on Twitter and said Andrew Wheeler will take over Monday. He continued in that role through a year ago and lobbied the Trump Administration on behalf of Murray Energy even while being considered for the deputy administrator role at the EPA. In his letter Pruitt wrote, "It is extremely hard for me to cease serving you in this role because I count it a blessing to be serving you in any capacity, but also, because of the transformative work that is occurring".

In his resignation letter, Pruitt cited "the unrelenting attacks" that were taking a toll on him and his family. He also attempted to use his influence to get his wife a job, including as the owner of a Chick-fil-A franchise. The recommendations include a 50 percent cut to the EPA staff, and US withdrawal from the Paris climate change agreement-which Trump already initiated.

"From moving to roll back strong fuel economy standards, to repealing the Clean Power Plan, to undermining chemical regulation, to suppressing climate science, to advocating for US withdrawal from the Paris climate agreement, Scott Pruitt made the EPA stand for Every Polluter's Ally", he said in a statement. Inhofe had defended Pruitt, a former Oklahoma attorney general, after meeting with him last month. President Trump tweeted the announcement, saying the agency's deputy administrator will assume the position until the President nominates a new Secretary.

He was confirmed by the Senate on February 17, 2017, on a 52-46 vote, the most recorded "no" votes of any EPA administrator.

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Several environmental agencies also cheered Mr. Pruitt's exit.

Wheeler was a lobbyist for Murray Energy, among the largest coal companies in the country.

In recent weeks, an exodus of trusted staffers left Pruitt increasingly isolated, and some once-loyal Republican lawmakers wearied of defending him.

"The great majority goes to effective fact-based research of quality journalists who exposed the depth of Scott Pruitt's corruption", she said. But some worry that his promotion may accelerate the Trump administration's determined dismantling of the EPA.

He was forced out following a series of revelations involving pricey trips with first-class airline seats and unusual security spending, including a $43,000 soundproof booth for making private phone calls.

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