Pruitt will be replaced by Andrew Wheeler, current deputy at EPA
Scott Pruitt has resigned as U.S. EPA Administrator, according to President Donald Trump. The resignation comes amid swirling controversy concerning ethics and potential irresponsible spending, among other accusations. Said accusations have led to multiple federal investigations into Pruitt’s conduct while leading the agency.
President Trump was not dissenting in his opinion of Pruitt, writing on Twitter, “Within the Agency Scott has done an outstanding job.” Pruitt was the focus of several scandals throughout his tenure, including accusations of unethical travel spending, security costs, relations with industry lobbyists and his use of government resources, as well as the blocking of a water contamination study, which was recently forced to be released following a senate committee decision.
Pruitt’s successor will be Andrew Wheeler, the current deputy at EPA. Wheeler will assume his new post on Monday, July 9, 2018.
In another series of posts on Twitter, President Trump explicitly states that Pruitt was not forced out of his position, claiming he resigned on his own accord. Pruitt’s resignation letter expresses no explicit regrets regarding any of the swirling controversy surrounding his time at EPA, saying “unrelenting attacks on my personally, my family, are unprecedented and have taken a sizable toll on all of us.”
Pruitt was an effective steward of President Trump’s approach to environmental issues and the agency’s purview, as he was able to effectively scale back many Obama-era policies concerning climate change, pollution standards and other regulations.
As it stands, Pruitt is currently the subject of 12 ongoing federal investigations into the aforementioned potential ethics violations. These investigations will continue despite his resignation, according to a spokesman for EPA’s Office of Inspector General.