Pruitt chose to resign, 'no final straw'

Scott Pruitt resigns after scandal-plagued tenure

His deputy, Andrew Wheeler, is taking over as acting director.

"But environmental groups chafed at Pruitt's actions, particularly his support of fossil fuel industries, like coal", NBC concluded. He is a former energy industry lobbyist. Before Trump nominated him to become deputy EPA administrator last fall, Wheeler was a lobbyist at Faegre Baker Daniels Consulting, where his best-paying client was the coal mining company Murray Energy.

Pruitt, as Oklahoma's attorney general before heading up the EPA, had sued the federal agency more than a dozen times on behalf of his oil-drilling state. Jim Inhofe, R-Okla., author of the book The Greatest Hoax: How the Global Warming Conspiracy Threatens Your Future and who NRDC calls "without question the most virulent climate denier on Capitol Hill".

Pruitt not only was the "worst head of the agency in its 48-year history", NBC quoted the Environmental Working Group as saying, but he also "will forever be associated with extraordinary ethical corruption and the abuse of power for petty personal enrichments".

Environmental groups, such as Clean Power Lake County, have seen Pruitt as the man who has systematically destabilized the very organization he was chosen to lead in order to carry out President Donald Trump's agenda to roll back environmental regulations imposed under former President Barack Obama.

"If somebody changed, deleted, scrubbed a federal record with the intent of deceiving the public or intent of deceiving anybody, it could very well be a violation of federal law", said Larry Noble, a former general counsel at the Federal Election Commission.

Earlier this week he was urged to resign by a woman who confronted him in a restaurant, criticizing his policy and the cuts he's made to emission standards.

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Moments before he left office, Scott Pruitt as administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency granted a loophole that will allow a major increase in the manufacturing of a diesel freight truck that produces as much as 55 times the air pollution as trucks that have modern emissions controls. James Inhofe of Oklahoma.

Pruitt is the latest Trump Cabinet official to lose his job over ethics issues. There are more than 500 abandoned mines, some of which are already part of the EPA's Superfund program. The Washington Post reported that a longtime Pruitt friend and lobbyist helped arrange the trip and later registered as a foreign agent representing Morocco.

Last year, Pruitt had the hefty-priced soundproof phone booth installed in his office, leading to his spending being questioned by the Government Accountability Office. Pruitt said his staff never told him the cost.

His job had been in jeopardy since it emerged he had leased a property a year ago that was co-owned by the wife of a veteran fossil fuels lobbyist, whose firm had sought regulatory rollbacks from the EPA.

Some of the tasks were outright freakish, including a reported order to find and obtain a used Trump-brand mattress from a Trump hotel.

Mr Pruitt's resignation is the latest in a long list of White House departures since Mr Trump took office previous year.

During congressional testimony in April, Mr Pruitt was unapologetic, often blaming his staff for any agency missteps.

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