When Sen. Deb Fischer (R-NE) voted to approve Scott Pruitt to head the Environmental Protection Agency, she praised his “leadership.”
But on Thursday, Pruitt testified before two Congressional committees, who questioned him about a string of abuses and other allegations of misdeeds since taking the job.
This begs the question: How’s that leadership working out, Sen. Fischer?
“Sen. Fischer’s definition of leadership appears to be a bit warped, she must have gotten confused with the definition of corruption,” said Nebraska Democratic Party Chair Jane Kleeb. “When will Sen. Fischer get focused back on Nebraska values rather than this Washington style of politics?”
The instances of Pruitt’s gaffes, alleged abuses and extravagant spending are abundant:
–A government watchdog agency concluded that the EPA violated federal law in spending more than $43,000 to install a private phone booth in Pruitt’s office.
-The lobbyist whose wife rented a condo to Scott Pruitt lobbied the EPA while Pruitt was leading it, contrary to his and Pruitt’s public denials that he had any business before the agency.
-The EPA signed off on a project for an energy company represented by the firm of the lobbyist that Pruitt accepted a deal from to rent a Washington condo at far below market value.
-Pruitt wasted more than $100,000 in taxpayer money on first class airfare during his first year in office.
-Pruitt took advantage of an obscure provision to give raises to two of his closest aides, and then falsely claimed he didn’t know about it.
– The EPA’s inspector general office is planning to examine Pruitt’s use of round-the-clock security detail while on personal trips, including a family visit to Disneyland and attendance at sporting events.
-The EPA’s inspector general released a report showing the agency granted previously undisclosed pay raises of more than 20 percent to several of Pruitt’s political employees.
-Pruitt’s former deputy chief of staff told lawmakers that Pruitt insisted on staying in luxury hotels that were costlier than allowed by government standards and pushed to fly on an airline not on the government’s approved list so he could accrue more frequent flier miles.
-Pruitt allegedly routinely asked his staff to “find reasons” for him to travel to Oklahoma so that he could stay in his home state for long weekends, often at taxpayer expense.
-Pruitt allegedly paid no rent while he stayed at a lobbyist-owned condo on Capitol Hill.
-EPA’s inspector general is conducting at least ten federal investigations related to Pruitt, including into questionable spending by his security detail.
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