Protesters at Scott Pruitt’s latest congressional appearance want him fired. So do many members of Congress.
As the embattled EPA chief gave his opening remarks Wednesday before the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on the environment, a group of protesters in the audience held up signs that read “Fire him” and “Mr. Corrupt” — in full view of the lawmakers questioning Pruitt about his agency’s budget, including the many egregious ways he’s spent taxpayer money.
And the protesters aren’t alone in their wishes. Sen. Tom Udall, a Democrat from New Mexico, also called on Pruitt to resign during the hearing.
One hundred and seventy Democratic members of the House already signed a letter calling for Pruitt’s resignation, and four Republicans in the House have called for Pruitt to step down. Sen. Chuck Grassley also threatened to call for Pruitt’s resignation on Tuesday — not over any of Pruitt’s numerous ethical lapses but rather over EPA policies that would hurt the ethanol-producing industries in Grassley’s corn-rich state of Iowa.
Numerous advocacy groups have also joined forces on the #BootPruitt campaign. Even the union that represents EPA employees wants the EPA chief out of office.
Pruitt’s latest testimony before the Senate likely won’t help his cause. As head of the EPA, Pruitt has spent over $3 million in taxpayer cash supposedly to protect himself, including flying first class and using a 24-hour security detail. He’s justified the expense by citing threats against his security and even said the EPA’s internal watchdog listed those threats as reasoning for the measures.
Cover image: Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt testifies during a Senate Appropriations Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies Subcommittee hearing in Dirksen Building on the proposed FY2019 budget for the EPA on May 16, 2018. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call) (CQ Roll Call via AP Images)