Scott Pruitt’s ‘Unethical and Potentially Illegal’ Acts, 4 EPA Email Accounts

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For Immediate Release: 
Thursday, April 12, 2018

WASHINGTON – There was stunning news today on the seemingly endless scandals engulfing Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt. Since taking office, Pruitt has used four different official agency email addresses, The Washington Post reported.

And a former senior staffer to Pruitt, who also served on the Trump campaign, has informed top House and Senate leaders of the administrator’s “unethical and potentially illegal” activity – beyond what has already been widely reported.

The Post obtained a letter Sens. Jeff Merkley, D-Ore., and Tom Carper, D-Del., sent Tuesday to the Inspector General of the EPA, urging him to immediately investigate the matter.

We write to share our deep concern over Administrator Pruitt’s reported use of multiple email accounts … It is imperative that there be an investigation into whether the agency has properly searched these email addresses for responsive documents in response to Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests.

“Scott Pruitt’s use of four email addresses is like a criminal wiping fingerprints off the wheel of his getaway car before dumping it for another one,” EWG President Ken Cook said. “Only government officials with something to hide move between multiple email accounts.”

According to The Post’s report and the letter from lawmakers to the EPA Inspector General, the email addresses Pruitt has used while head of the agency include: [email protected][email protected][email protected] and [email protected].

Meanwhile, a Trump campaign aide and former deputy chief of staff to Pruitt, Kevin Chmielewski, has told top congressional democrats that arranging Pruitt’s scheduling and travel arrangements was a “nightmare,” according to BuzzFeed and other outlets. He also had firsthand knowledge of office renovations and huge pay raises for political staff.

Chmielewski told the lawmakers about documents that would corroborate virtually all of Pruitt’s scandals, from exorbitant spending on first-class travel and security, to office furnishings that far exceeded budgets. 

Today, members of the House and Senate sent a letter to Pruitt demanding all additional information.

The new information provided by Mr. Chmielewski, if accurate, leaves us certain that your leadership at EPA has been fraught with numerous and repeated unethical and potentially illegal action on a wide range of consequential matters.

Following last month’s news of Pruitt’s sweetheart condo deal with the wife of an energy lobbyist, White House Chief of Staff John Kelly reportedly told Pruitt the scandals needed to stop.

“If President Trump and John Kelly don’t fire Pruitt in light of this, then any amount of graft should be considered official policy throughout the administration,” said Cook. “If Pruitt’s rampant looting is allowed to continue, by all means, turn on the taxpayer spigot for the rest of the cabinet.”

Photo courtesy of AP Images
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