The Latest

THE LATEST

THE LATEST THINKING

THE LATEST THINKING

The opinions of THE LATEST’s guest contributors are their own.

How Does Scott Pruitt Still Have a Job?

Robert Franklin

Posted on June 8, 2018 18:09

1 user

Since he first defiled the offices of the Environmental Protection Agency, former Oklahoma attorney general Scott Pruitt has been embroiled in controversy after controversy. How long will this ethics nightmare be allowed to continue, and more importantly, why has it been allowed to go on as long as it has?

Well, Scott Pruitt's in hot water, again, because it wouldn't be a week in Washington without us collectively face-palming about something involving members of Donald Trump's three-ring circus of the Beltway.

This week, two tales involving Pruitt's trademark foolishness broke news wires, albeit when the media wasn't focused on Trump's apparent burgeoning trade war with our allies or high-profile celebrity suicides. According to information obtained by the Sierra Club from a Freedom of Information Act request, in 2017, Pruitt ordered an aide, Sydney Hupp, to set up a meeting between himself and Chick-Fil-A chief executive Dan Cathy, where the two were to discuss a "business opportunity." Apparently, this opportunity involved Pruitt's wife, Marlyn, becoming a Chick-Fil-A franchisee.

While it may not seem like a big deal that Marlyn Pruitt wanted to operate her own Chick-Fil-A, the fact that Pruitt used a government resource to conduct non-government business is a severe breach of ethics. Further adding to the absurdity of this story, Marlyn Pruitt never even went through with it. She didn't finish the paperwork.

The second sordid story involving Scott Pruitt to break this week also involved an improper use of government resources. Apparently, Pruitt has been using his $3.5 million-per-year security detail to procure a specific moisturizer used at Ritz-Carlton Hotels, giving Pruitt -- at least for a few moments here and there -- what is possibly the most expensive personal assistant payroll in the country.

Our tax dollars at work, folks!

With stories like this constantly hitting the news wires, it's not even close to shocking to hear that congresspersons on both sides of the aisle are calling for his resignation. The dude is currently facing 12 federal inquiries into his activities at the EPA, including:

-- a $50-per-night rate to stay in a condo owned by the wife of a lobbyist whose company has business with the EPA;

-- Raises Pruitt gave to two aides -- including Sydney Hupp's sister, Millan -- that were initially rejected by the White House, but given out anyway as per an obscure provision in the Safe Water Drinking Act (Pruitt would then go on to lie about having any knowledge of the raises in the first place);

-- Pruitt's obscene spending, including $43,000 on a soundproof phone booth and over $1,500 on silver fountain pens;

-- Pruitt's charging of Millan Hupp to carry out several personal errands, including finding Pruitt a "Trump Home Luxury Pillow Top" mattress, scouting apartments in higher-income D.C. neighborhoods, and even arranging a vacation home in California, so Pruitt could go see his Oklahoma Sooners play in the Rose Bowl. These tasks violate federal ethics standards.

This is just the tip of the iceberg, as they say.

If ethics meant anything to the Trump Administration, Pruitt would have been iced months ago. But since they don't, Pruitt will likely continue to be a reliable source of head-shaking hilarity.

At least there's that, right?

Robert Franklin

Posted on June 8, 2018 18:09

Comments

comments powered by Disqus
THE LATEST THINKING

Video Site Tour

The Latest
The Latest

Subscribe to THE LATEST Newsletter.

The Latest
The Latest

Share this TLT through...

The Latest