Polluters in Charge: Clean Water Action Statement on the Approval of Scott Pruitt as EPA Administrator

Friday, February 17, 2017

Washington, DC - Despite numerous unanswered questions about conflicts of interest, the Senate approved the nomination of Scott Pruitt to be EPA Administrator, largely along party lines. Leading up to the vote more than one million Americans wrote letters and signed petitions opposing Scott Pruitt's nomination. Clean Water Action President and CEO Bob Wendelgass released the following statement.

"Republicans have made their priority very clear - to ensure their corporate polluter donors get whatever they want. Republicans have also let Americans know we cannot count on them to push back on President Trump's extremist anti-environmental agenda. Scott Pruitt refused to fully answer questions about his conflicts of interest, wouldn't address his deep ties to the oil and gas industry, potentially lied about seeking donations from oil companies, and dodged questions about whether he would recuse himself from decisions on issues that he has sued EPA over, yet Republican leadership move his nomination forward. Despite the fact that a judge in Oklahoma ordered the release of nearly 3,000 emails between Scott Pruitt and oil, gas, and coal companies, they rushed to judgment and forced a premature vote."

"More importantly, Scott Pruitt is not qualified to lead EPA. He pledged to waste time and taxpayer resources by withdrawing the Clean Water Rule. He believes that debate about the reality human caused climate change and the need to act now should be encouraged. He believes that protection of the environment and public health should be devolved to the states, despite the fact that pollution doesn't respect state boundaries. His radical views are out of step with the American public."

"President Trump and Republicans in Congress don't have a mandate to gut protections for health and clean water and people let them hear it. Opposition to Scott Pruitt was strong. More than one million Americans signed petitions and sent letters to Senate offices. Phone lines were jammed and voicemail boxes were full. This energetic opposition is here to stay. Americans are ready to stand against the radical policies of Scott Pruitt, Donald Trump, and the Republican Congress."


Since our founding during the campaign to pass the landmark Clean Water Act in 1972, Clean Water Action has worked to win strong health and environmental protections by bringing issue expertise, solution-oriented thinking and people power to the table. We will protect clean water in the face of attacks from a polluter friendly Administration and Congress.


Michael Kelly