Two of Scott Pruitt's top aides resign amid EPA scrutiny

08 June, 2018, 10:10 | Author: Sheila Harris
  • Pruitt had aide look into Chick-fil-A franchise opportunity for his wife report

Perhaps world history. In the middle of April, almost two months ago, CNN put the list of Scott Pruitt scandals at 15.

Scott Pruitt wound up speaking not with Cathy but rather with another company representative, and Marlyn Pruitt started but did not complete an application to become a Chick-fil-A franchisee.

Hupp and Greenwalt were also the two aides who were set to receive Pruitt-approved pay raises despite the White House's refusal to sign off on the raises.

Hupp told lawmakers that Pruitt had her conduct numerous personal errands, including inquiring about buying a used mattress.

If the case proceeds as scheduled, the EPA will have to produce research to back Pruitt's claim in the coming months.

On today, Pruitt laughed when a reporter asked about the reports he had tried to use his government position to financially benefit his spouse.

Public officials are prohibited from receiving unpaid services from employees or for using their office for private gain.

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The Washington Post reported this week that Pruitt asked his staffer Sydney Hupp to reach out to Chick-fil-A corporate in May 2017, which she did. The focus of almost a dozen federal inquiries into his travel expenses, security practices and other issues, Pruitt was on the Hill to testify about his agency's FY2019 budget proposal.

Multiple senior administration officials who spoke to ABC News say the president does not appear to be changing his stance and is standing behind Pruitt. Meanwhile, Trump praised Pruitt on Wednesday during a briefing on hurricane preparedness at the Federal Emergency Management Agency's headquarters.

In the fall, Pruitt tasked his scheduler with the nongovernment mission of shopping for a discount "Trump Home Luxury Plush Euro Pillow Top" mattress.

Pruitt has been under intense scrutiny since March, when media reports first revealed the EPA chief had rented a luxury Capitol Hill condo tied to a prominent oil and gas lobbyist for just $50 a night.

"Somebody has to say that about you a little bit, you know that, Scott", the president added.

Pruitt in a statement called Hupp a "valued member of the EPA team from day one".

In appearances before congressional panels since then, Pruitt has repeatedly blamed subordinates for his alleged ethical lapses.

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