Files undercut Pruitt's need for 1st-class travel


Democrats on the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee wrote in a letter Tuesday that they have reviewed security assessments describing 16 purported threats against Pruitt.

After taking charge of the Environmental Protection Agency, administrator Scott Pruitt reportedly wanted to change the agency's logo because it reminded him of a marijuana leaf, The New York Times reported on Wednesday.

Gowdy, in his February 20 letter, criticized the EPA, reiterated that "clearly federal regulations prohibit a blanket waiver" for security purposes, and requested that the EPA turn over all the individual waivers Pruitt would need to be able to fly in first class.

The agency pushed back strongly on Tuesday. It was unclear whether the move, first reported by Politico, was triggered by the release of information related to Pruitt's security.

Sen. John Barrasso, R-Wyo, the chairman of the Senate panel with jurisdiction over the EPA, talked about he is prepared for the tip results of a White Dwelling evaluation of Pruitt's conduct and spending. The Wyoming Republican lashed out at his Democratic colleagues, accusing Carper and Whitehouse of selectively quoting the documents and improperly disclosing "law enforcement sensitive information" without the approval of EPA or the Secret Service. "Any reasonable reading of these documents supports the Office of the Inspector General's statements that Administrator Pruitt faces a 'variety of direct death threats'".

Committee Democrats, led by Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., the ranking member of the panel, have requested Gowdy to subpoena the EPA for knowledge and preserve a listening to with Pruitt and prime EPA officers. But there have been more questions and calls for investigation into whether it created a conflict of interest for Pruitt to rent from the wife of a lobbyist whose firm represented clients with interests before the EPA.

Chmielewski, who is on administrative leave without pay, is one of several EPA officials who departed or were reassigned after raising concerns about how Pruitt and his deputies operated. The dedication that there have been additional extreme threats in the direction of Pruitt has been cited as the reason that he needs a 24/7 security factor and commonly takes first-class flights. "Scott Pruitt has lost all credibility and the confidence of the American people - it's time for him to go".

"They felt they could not protect him appropriately, based on the amount of times he was being recognized and the way that some members of the public were acting toward him", said Barnet, who added that he was "not aware of any physical confrontations" the administrator had faced since taking office.

Gowdy's latest request comes just days after a top government ethics official wrote to EPA lawyers, urging the agency to address any violations linked to Pruitt's spending habits, his condo lease from a lobbyist and his personnel decisions.

"Administrator Pruitt is focused on advancing President Trump's agenda of regulatory certainty and environmental stewardship", EPA spokesman Jahan Wilcox said Wednesday.

In addition, Gowdy said in his letter Wednesday that he plans to examine Pruitt's unusual lease agreement for a condo on Capitol Hill a year ago with Vicki Hart, a health-care lobbyist.