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EPA chief Pruitt’s senior legal counsel resigns amid ethics complaints

08 June 2018

Joni Ernst (R-Iowa) said at an energy policy forum in Washington on Tuesday that Pruitt is "about as swampy as you get here in Washington, D.C".

Elaina Plott, a writer for The Atlantic magazine, reported Wednesday that a top aide for the EPA had resigned, and that EPA spokesman Jahan Wilcox snapped at her when she called him for comment.

Greenwalt is due to appear this month before a panel of House Oversight committee staffers investigating a series of ethics allegations against Pruitt. The subject line of the email was "Meeting with Administrator Scott Pruitt".

The report comes as numerous reports on Pruitt's spending habits have distracted from the agency's work.

Environmental Protection Agency chief Scott Pruitt is laughing at questions about whether he tried to use his position to get a Chick-fil-A franchise for his wife.

However, President Donald Trump, who has encouraged Pruitt's rollback of environmental regulations at the EPA, continued to publicly stand by Pruitt.

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Pruitt and his aides also put out feelers among government and private contacts about interior decorator work for Pruitt's wife, according to Chmielewski, who says he was sacked from the agency after challenging some of Pruitt's spending.

Kurlander said that the EPA administrator's wife "started, but did not complete, the Chick-fil-A franchisee application" and added that Pruitt's wife is not now and has never previously been a franchisee for the company. Even though he was turned down, Pruitt gave them raises anyway. "And you know, somebody has to say that about you a little bit". A separate statement released by the EPA had Greenwalt praising Pruitt's "visionary leadership and tenacity". She told the House panel that Pruitt had her ask about getting an "old mattress" from the Trump hotel at about the same time he was moving to a new apartment in Washington.

President Trump defended Pruitt at an event on Wednesday.

"My wife is an entrepreneur herself, I love, she loves, we love Chick-fil-A as a franchise of faith and it's one of the best in the country and that's something we were very excited about", Pruitt told WISC.

Pruitt in appearances before congressional hearings this spring has denied responsibility for any ethical lapses, saying subordinates made those decisions.

EPA chief Pruitt’s senior legal counsel resigns amid ethics complaints