- EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt has come under fire in the media in recent weeks.
- Andy Surabian, a former special assistant to President Donald Trump in the White House, argues that Trump should ignore the noise and keep Pruitt in his Cabinet.
- That’s because Pruitt has been a huge supporter and enactor of Trump’s agenda.
It’s come to this. In the media’s quest for EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt’s scalp, they are now second-guessing the salaries of individual low-level aides, questioning whether the director of scheduling and advance really deserved a recent raise.
The government admits to annually wasting an amount of money larger than the GDP of most nations on earth, but we’re really going to spend time on the $114,590 salary of an EPA staffer?
CNN’s self-righteous breathlessness over a spate of ticky-tacky Pruitt “scandals” is senseless on its face. So what’s really going on here?
Pruitt’s biggest problem is not his alleged misdeeds. It’s his effectiveness and determination at rolling back the job-killing, regulatory bonanza of the Obama years.
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The liberal media is now intentionally training its ire on Pruitt, because unlike some of the president’s former Cabinet officials who have recently been forced out, Pruitt is actually effectively prosecuting the president’s “America First” agenda.
When it comes to economy-strangling regulations, Pruitt is, as President Donald Trump likes to say, “a total killer.” He has no peer in Trump’s Cabinet in terms of his ability to cut back red tape. From day one, he began dismantling Barack Obama’s legacy with startling effectiveness and cunning. And for this, radical environmentalists and other left-wingers despise him.
In Trump’s efforts to roll back regulations, “Pruitt has proved to be one of his most effective lieutenants,” The New York Times wrote. Pruitt has initiated rollbacks of more than two-dozen unnecessary and economy-strangling environmental regulations.
Most recently, he announced a rollback of vehicle-mileage requirements back to levels achievable without doubling the cost of a car. Not only that, but Pruitt is also trying to bring sanity to the Renewable Fuel Standard, which has been responsible for killing the jobs of thousands of American refinery workers, many of whom voted Trump into the White House.
Pruitt’s so-called scandals are so silly, they’re almost beneath discussion
Most of the ink has been spilled over his interim living arrangement when he came to Washington, when he stayed in a vacant condo of a friend for $50 a night. Pruitt rented the room from Vicky Hart, who is married to a lobbyist.
Liberals who despise the policies that Pruitt is advancing say the room was rented too cheaply to Pruitt and that, in return, Pruitt allegedly helped Hart’s husband’s firms’ client with regulatory decisions that are exactly in line with the reasons those critics are targeting Pruitt in the first place.
“This is just corrupt,” huffed Rep. Betty McCollum, a Democrat from Minnesota, to The Washington Post.
“I have a salary. I pay for a place to stay. And it would be a sweetheart deal if I only had to pay my mortgage on the days I’m there,” she added, apparently unaware that hotels exist.
Pruitt’s defenders have said the arrangement was like those made by millions of Americans on Airbnb.com. Is it possible to rent a room in Washington, DC, for $50 a night on Airbnb? Well, yes, a quick search shows it’s easy to find rents in that range.
More fundamentally, Trump’s policy favors expanding energy production.
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“We’re unleashing American energy and clearing the way for thousands and thousands of high-paying American energy jobs,” he said last year in announcing an executive order to permit offshore drilling that Obama had stopped.
Isn’t that a more likely explanation for why a pipeline expansion plan was approved— rather than Pruitt receiving an alleged discount of a trivial amount from the wife of a lobbyist whose firm didn’t even contact EPA about the decision?
Of course it is. But that’s not the point of this exercise for the media: To destroy Scott Pruitt. They can’t allow him to roll back Obama’s entire left-wing legacy at the EPA without putting up a fight.
Pruitt, like Trump, Clarence Thomas, and countless others before him, represents an ideological threat to the institutional left and their allies in the mainstream media. To the Fake News Industrial Complex, that justifies trumping up baseless allegations in an attempt to take him out. They’re doing everything they can to force the President’s hand to get rid of Pruitt, because they know just how effective he is in his role.
Pruitt has served his boss well — just a little too well for his liberal critics.
And it’s for that very reason why he’s worth defending and keeping atop the EPA, so he can continue to be a total anti-regulatory killer, for years to come.