Just How Many Scott Pruitt Ethical Scandals Can We Tolerate?

Another day, another ethical scandal for EPA Director Scott Pruitt. It’s no secret that Pruitt is terrible at his job and hell-bent on destroying the environment, but it’s become clear in recent months that he also poses a†number of ethical conundrums.

Since Trump is already on a roll with firing members of his staff, let’s encourage him to dump Pruitt with this new Care2 petition.

Here are†a few of the ethical concerns surrounding Pruitt:

1. THE CONDO

When Pruitt moved to D.C. last year, he rented a condo owned by a prominent energy lobbyist for just $50 per night†– a rate that’s not even a full third of the rent charged for comparable properties in the same neighborhood.

After news of this apparent lobbyist†favor for a government official went public, the EPA quickly and retroactively ruled that this arrangement met its internal standards. Rather than clearing Pruitt’s name, however, it just looks the EPA doesn’t have ethical standards.

2. LYING TO CONGRESS

During his confirmation hearing, Pruitt told the Senate under oath that he had never used a personal email account to handle government duties while serving as the attorney general of Oklahoma. However, subsequent records releases show that Pruitt did, in fact, use his personal email to communicate with corporations and lobbyists as an elected official.

Pruitt didn’t just fib on this issue. By all appearances, he was using his non-government email to conceal the fact that he was getting chummy with the private sector. The Oklahoma Bar Association even opened an investigation into this issue.

3. EXPENSIVE FLIGHTS

When it comes to flying, Pruitt does it in style — which is problematic because it’s on the taxpayer’s dime. In 2017, Pruitt spent $105,000 on first class flights and another $58,000 on charter flights. The government doesn’t typically spring for pricier tickets, but Pruitt cites a time when a passenger in coach cursed at him as a security threat that warranted the first class travel.

On top of that, when conducting business internationally, Pruitt obtained waivers to government rules that require Pruitt to fly on U.S.-owned carriers so that he could fly on a luxury international airline with tickets “several times the cost of what was paid for other staffers who accompanied him on the trip”†– again, funded†by taxpayers.

4. UNPRECEDENTED SECURITY

Though EPA chiefs typically receive a basic as-needed security detail, Pruitt hired a dozen more agents to protect him and give him 24/7 protection, with their salaries totaling $2 million annually. The Trump administration may not be popular, but even Pruitt’s fellow cabinet members don’t have security nearly this extensive.

Pruitt is so obsessed with being surrounded by bodyguards that he even brings them along on vacation†to places like the Rose Bowl game, Disneyland and his private residence back in Oklahoma. It’s all starting to look like a big waste of taxpayer money.

5. THE UNNECESSARY SOUNDPROOF BOOTH

Pruitt must be really paranoid when it comes to security because he also took the unusual step of ordering a $43,000 soundproof phone booth to be installed at the EPA. There was actually already a soundproof phone booth in another part of the same building, but Pruitt wanted his own to conduct business.

What’s he so concerned about people overhearing, anyway? Could it possibly be worse than†what’s†already been discovered about him?

With all of these mounting strikes against Pruitt, even fellow Republican Chris Christie, who headed Trump’s transition team, said, “I don’t know how you survive this.

While I’d personally prefer to see Pruitt go down for his blatant disregard for the agency he leads, the ethical issues are important, as well.

U.S. Representative Ted Lieu tweeted on Saturday:

Republicans who don’t believe in climate change & want to dismantle environmental protections are a dime a dozen. You don’t need Scott Pruitt who spent taxpayer dollars on 1st class travel, violated ethics laws & is deeply paranoid. You should fire him.

Take Action!

Lieu’s right. We may not be able to get someone who loves the environment into this role under this administration/congress, but at the very least we should have someone who’s not cozying up to lobbyists and swindling money from the U.S. taxpayers. Call on Trump to fire Pruitt by signing this Care2 petition.

And if you want to make a difference on another issue you find deeply troubling, you too can create a Care2 petition, and use this handy guide to get started. Youíll find Care2ís vibrant community of activists ready to step up and help you.

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55 comments

Elaine W
Elaine W5 months ago

Expecting Ethical standards a thing of the past.

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Toni W
Toni W5 months ago

TYFS

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Toni W
Toni W5 months ago

TYFS

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M s
M s5 months ago

REMOVE PRUITT from OFFICE NOW! get him OUT of power

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Henry M
Henry M5 months ago

Ridiculous. Our government loves to have its ministries run by the people that those ministries are ment to police? Oil-executives in the EPA, Wall Street bankers in the Federal Reserve, anti-labeling lobbyists in the FDA, and hunters running big animal conservation. This is like giving radical Taliban insurgents jobs managing the Pentagon.

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Angela K
Angela K5 months ago

petition signed

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Nita L
Nita L5 months ago

Pruitt will be gone soon but he will be replaced by someone even more disgusting.

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Karen H
Karen H5 months ago

Uh oh! Trump just called Pruitt "a good man". He's done that with just about everyone he's fired, so Pruitt may be on the way out.

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David C
David C5 months ago

if Pruitt was decent man he would resign, but then again he is friends with tRump

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Dot A
Dot A5 months ago

It's troubling how many in this nation have allowed unethical behavior to go unscathed. That has a great deal to do with how Trump was so easily accepted by an embarrassing percentage of voters. And how easily it was to condemn a woman who had the gumption to run for the presidency. Women aren't supposed to compete with men in the man's world. Things do change, however,... What was once a value is now seen as a weakness. Such as integrity. If we are to find The Heart of America again, it will be by living with integrity, and the goal of the common-good as our Constitution was written to reflect. OK, we didn't live up to that perfectly, so criticism isn't necessary. However, since I was a little girl in the 50's it was the bright and shining hope of our country to obtain a higher standard for all human beings, not just the elite or privileged. I am absolutely ashamed of how corrupt too many of this nation now behave, and seem entitled to be as 'slick' and untrustworthy as they can be to get whatever selfish gains they desire. This is not the way to a better world. It is NOT! The Common-Good will inspire all people to work together for a better life. It CAN work!

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