22 July 2018

Trump selects EPA critic Scott Pruitt to head EPA

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President-elect Donald Trump has selected Oklahoma Attorney General and Environmental Protection Agency critic Scott Pruitt as his pick to run the EPA, according to Trump senior adviser Kellyanne Conway.

"Attorney General Pruitt has great qualifications and a good record as the AG of Oklahoma," Conway told reporters in the lobby of Trump Tower Wednesday night. "There were a number of qualified candidates for that particular position that the president-elect interviewed and he settled on Attorney General Pruitt and we'll look forward to the confirmation hearings."

Pruitt's selection may cause alarm in some circles -- his bio on his website touts him as a "leading advocate against the EPA's activist agenda."

As Oklahoma's attorney general, Pruitt joined with 27 other states in suing the federal government over implementation of regulations directed towards combating climate change. Pruitt has argued those regulations violate citizens' property rights and serve as a deterrent to the oil and gas industries that largely drive his state's economy.

Pruitt's actions largely mirror Trump's own rhetoric on the campaign trail, framing the EPA as an all-too-powerful agency pursuing an ideological agenda based on what he considers dubious science.

Environmental groups were quick to condemn the decision as "appalling," with one comparing it to "putting the fox in charge of the chicken coop." The reports come just one day after Trump's one-on-one meeting with former vice president and climate advocate Al Gore.

2016.12.08 / 09:12
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