Scott Pruitt, President Trump’s pick to head the EPA, is under fire yet again.
The former Oklahoma State Attorney General was just alleged to have used his personal email account for official business while working at his old job. Now Congressional Democrats want answers, seeing as Pruitt asserted during his confirmation hearings that he had done nothing of the sort.
The five Democrats on the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, as led by the Committee’s Ranking Democrat Tom Carper of Delaware, have sent Pruitt a publicly available letter demanding that he both “correct the record” as to his usage of personal email while serving as Oklahoma’s State Attorney General and take substantive steps towards ensuring transparency at the EPA while its under his control.
Of course, the usage of personal email accounts on the part of a government official poses a serious threat to the safety of sensitive information that this official may be forced to speak of through email.
Republicans of all people should know this, seeing as they were the ones behind the years-long investigation into Hillary Clinton’s usage of a private email server while she served as secretary of state. Thus, what this incident with Pruitt goes to show is just how hollow and shallow much of the rhetoric spewed by the Republicans actually is. Frankly, they don’t really mean many of any of the seemingly good things that they say. This is especially true of the Trump Administration.
The letter that Pruitt got slapped with this Friday demands, as mentioned, that Pruitt “correct the record” on the issue of his usage of a private email account while he was Oklahoma’s State Attorney General.
‘Recent reporting and long delayed disclosure of emails and documents from your time as the Oklahoma Attorney General show that you were not fully forthcoming and truthful with the Committee in advance of your confirmation… Based on this new information, we ask that you correct the record…’
As also mentioned, the Senators writing to Pruitt demanded that he take specific, substantive steps towards ensuring transparency at the EPA.
‘[W]e ask that you affirm in writing your commitment to never use any personal email… for the entirety of your tenure at the EPA… we request that at the end of each month, you provide… a copy of your calendar that lists all meetings… in which you participated… and the participants and subject of each such meeting.’
The latter demand relates to Pruitt’s documented past of “coordinating” with oil and gas companies. The concern is that Pruitt’s relationship with oil and gas companies could further corrupt his already questionable decision making in his new job.
It’s not immediately clear whether or not Pruitt will comply with these demands, and it’s not immediately clear what steps Congressional Democrats are prepared to use to force Pruitt’s compliance. Congressional leaders have already proven themselves prepared to issue subpoenas for Trump administration officials if necessary.
You can read the full letter from Congressional Democrats to Pruitt at this link. Bernie Sanders is among the co-signers of the letter.
Featured Image via Justin Sullivan/Getty Images.