Scott Pruitt is losing his footing in the administration with yet another scandal.
Senate Democrats revealed that Scott Pruitt, head of the Environmental Protection Agency, has used four private email accounts since he took office.
The agency lawyers are concerned that Pruitt evaded federal records demands for releasing documents to the public and violated the Freedom of Information Act requests.
Democratic Senators from the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee Jeff Merkley (Ore.) and Tom Carper (Del.) wrote a letter on Thursday asking for agency inspectors to investigate.
BIG NEWS #MAGA, Trump's administration is using multiple secret email for government business. This is: - part of… https://t.co/vEdGbYRxQd— John Oberlin (@John Oberlin)1523636945.0
The Washington Post gained access to the letter expressing their concern over Pruitt's cagey email accounts.
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.
In addition to the administrator's conventional email address, firstname.lastname@example.org, Pruitt has two additional ones he claims are used for scheduling: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org. A fourth address, email@example.com, is a reference to his favorite football team from the University of Oklahoma.
@CREWcrew Pruitt is a swamp unto himself. Or maybe more like a toxic waste dump site.— Annabelle (@Annabelle)1523580164.0
An anonymous EPA staffer told the Post that if there was one email address that managed to slip under the radar from searches requested by the FOIA, then that "would be an enormous breach of the public trust."
Public records requests increased since Pruitt was appointed by Donald Trump to head the agency. In 2017, the EPA received 11,493 requests filed by the FOIA in 2017, surpassing the previous year's total by 995 requests.
Crook of the week: Squandering taxpayer money, taking payoffs from lobbyists and destroying the environment, all at… https://t.co/3XFmWPLIhF— Richard W. Painter (@Richard W. Painter)1523554715.0
He was under scrutiny for using private email addresses at his former job as Oklahoma attorney general, but at his confirmation hearing last year, he told the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee:
I use only my official OAG [office of the attorney general] email address and government-issued phone to conduct official business.
But the Post reported that some of Pruitt's official emails were copied into his private emails including,"American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), a corporate-backed group that focuses on state legislatures; the American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers, which has substantial interests in EPA issues; and members of Pruitt's staff."
@CREWcrew @Lawrence Good grief!! He is really going for full fledged Bond villain status.— kim washington (@kim washington)1523585735.0
@CREWcrew Is there anything @EPAScottPruitt has done right? Useful? Part of his job description?— The Worst POTUS Ever (@The Worst POTUS Ever)1523580052.0
Pruitt and the agency have been plagued with controversy over ethical issues. In addition to his agenda of dismantling environmental regulations, Pruitt rented a fancy condo at $50 a night from the wife of an energy lobbyist.
High-ranking officials at the agency, who wished to remain anonymous for fear of retaliation, disclosed that Pruitt spent an exorbitant amount of money on lavish furniture, flew first-class via specific airlines to accrue frequent flier miles, requested a bullet-proof vest and an expanded 20-person security detail.
Twitter expressed it's time for the EPA chief to be shown the door.
@CREWcrew PRUITT IS UNFIT TO SERVE THE UNITED STATES! He and Trump are in a league of their own when it comes to n… https://t.co/0MpovpEvWT— Dave 🌊 (@Dave 🌊)1523580744.0
@CREWcrew Somebody FIRE Pruitt’s ass already!— Will N (@Will N)1523590888.0
Donald Trump may have hired Pruitt based on these qualifications.
@OMGno2trump Trump’s qualifications for employment: Are you rich? Entitled? Corrupt? Hate gays and women? Racist… https://t.co/Wt32rNSW92— Lisa (@Lisa)1523637449.0
The president seems to think Pruitt is doing a fine job.
While Security spending was somewhat more than his predecessor, Scott Pruitt has received death threats because of… https://t.co/kneEeK0koP— Donald J. Trump (@Donald J. Trump)1523145803.0