Democratic lawmakers seek criminal corruption probe of EPA’s Pruitt

James Marshall
June 13, 2018

Included as evidence of corruption in Pruitt's agency are payments made to his wife, his directing an EPA staffer to contact a Chick-fil-A executive to open a franchise for his family, and renting an apartment for $50 a day from a lobbyist with influence in the agency.

With regard to the Democratic letter, an EPA spokesperson referred requests for comment to Pruitt's outside counsel.

The Daily Beast reported on Thursday that Pruitt has also tasked subordinates during work hours with getting snacks for him, including Greek yogurt and cookies, citing four sources familiar with the work environment at EPA.

Pruitt also, as The Washington Post first reported, approached Matthew Swift, the chief executive of Concordia, a NY nonprofit, using EPA resources, and got his wife a $2,000 gig to help with logistics for the group's annual conference, where Pruitt was a speaker, Beyer wrote.

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In addition, Beyer is asking the Federal Bureau of Investigation to look at the condo deal Pruitt made with a lobbyist's wife, securing a $50-per-night below-market-rate room for himself while in Washington. That business opportunity turned out to be Pruitt's desire to acquire a fast-food franchise for his wife.

"At the very least, we know that federal ethics laws bar public officials from using their position or staff for private gain". Swift did so, and he told The Post that Marlyn Pruitt earned $2,000 for three days of event support at the 2017 Concordia conference where Pruitt spoke. The senators asked EPA Inspector General Arthur Elkins Jr.to investigate the agency's compliance with open-records laws in the matter. Pruitt has also been accused of radically reshaping the EPA rulemaking process and weakening Obama administration efforts to tighten fuel economy standards.

In their letter, the lawmakers make the case that Pruitt's behavior rises to the level of criminal activity.

You can hear Pruitt in the video (via NBC) commenting on how "here we are talking about free speech, religious liberty, and folks won't let you engage in it at times" as the protester is escorted out. "Administrator Pruitt has certainly done just that".

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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