Donald Trump announces resignation of EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt

Pablo Tucker
July 6, 2018

He will be replaced by Deputy Administrator Andrew Wheeler as acting administrator, a former coal lobbyist who worked with Murray Energy CEO Bob Murray; was an aide for Jim Inhofe, the top climate science denier in the Senate; and who helped craft the Bush administration's ironically-named "Clear Skies" initiative, an effort to destroy the Clean Air Act.

"I have accepted the resignation of Scott Pruitt as the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency", Trump tweeted.

Judith Enck, an Obama-era former EPA regional administrator, told Mother Jones in an interview ahead of Wheeler's confirmation as deputy EPA administrator in April that Wheeler serving as EPA chief would be comparable to "having a tobacco lobbyist heading up the American Lung Association".

"I'm concerned that the Trump administration's assault on human health and the environment will continue long past Pruitt's departure from EPA", Pallone said. As head of the EPA, he lobbied Trump to fire Attorney General Jeff Sessions and make him the replacement. One longtime Pruitt ally Sen.

In his resignation letter, Pruitt cited "the unrelenting attacks" that were taking a toll on him and his family. In June, he told the Washington Examiner that he liked his current job and did not want to run the EPA.

From a policy perspective, Pruitt was one of Trump's most effective Cabinet members.

Despite his conservative background and his likely continuance of Trump's EPA agenda, Wheeler has previously criticized the President.

"Sadly, I am concerned that Andrew Wheeler's background means that he will never understand that saving coal is not the job of the EPA", Market said.

When we last surveyed the mess of scandals trailing the man in charge of upholding this country's environmental standards, we talked about the millions of taxpayer dollars he spends on a security detail, his sweetheart condo deal, and his $40,000 phone booth. Trump added that he "will always be thankful to him for this". A senior scheduler was reportedly fired for questioning the practice of deleting controversial meetings from Pruitt's calendar.

The EPA under Pruitt has come under intense media scrutiny for accusations of ethics violations, including private jet travel, contacts with energy executives, and trying to find his wife a job.

Pruitt and his activities have been the subject of numerous investigations by the EPA's inspector general, the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, the Government Accountability Office, the White House Office of Management and Budget, and the U.S. Office of Special Counsel.

Pruitt pushed to fill EPA jobs with personnel from the coal, oil, and chemical industries. No stranger to the EPA, where he worked for almost two decades, Wheeler has also served as an advisor to Senator James Inhofe (R-Okla.), a fierce critic of climate protection policy.

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