EPA chief tells senators criticisms against him unfounded, exaggerated

EPA chief tells senators criticisms against him unfounded, exaggerated

Udall pressed Pruitt on whether he had instructed EPA agents to turn on emergency lights and sirens as they drove him around Washington.

Udall then cited a February 27, 2017 email released Wednesday by Democratic Sens.

"Unfortunately, I am concerned that numerous important policy efforts you are engaged in are being overshadowed", she said.

"The agency should not have done that", Pruitt said, though he declined to apologize for the tweet when Udall asked him to do so.

But Pruitt said he didn't recall making the request and insisted that to the best of his knowledge policies governing the use of lights were followed.

"Then that's a gift, that's a violation of federal law", Udall said, noting that subordinates of federal officials are prohibited from providing free services to their bosses.

In a February 2017 email released Wednesday by Democratic Sens. Udall said Perrotta wrote in the email that Pruitt had encouraged the use of the devices. Perrotta has since resigned.

Udall also asked Pruitt about a tweet issued by EPA's official account last month mocking Democratic senators for failing to block the confirmation of Andrew Wheeler, a former coal lobbyist now working as EPA's No. 2 official.

More news: US Senate panel advances Trump nominee to lead Central Intelligence Agency

Udall, describing Pruitt's management of the agency as "disastrous", again called on Pruitt to resign.

At the beginning of the hearing, Republican Sen. "But I do think there are legitimate questions that need to be answered". Chmielewski told ABC that his boss, EPA Chief of Staff Ryan Jackson, told him: "Administrator Pruitt either wants me to fire you or put you in an office so that he doesn't have to see you again". It was the only time in the two-hour Senate hearing that Pruitt took any responsibility for the decisions that have led to at least 14 federal investigations into his ethical conduct, alleged retaliation against whistleblowers, and extravagant spending.

For his part, Pruitt took the same approach as he did in a pair of contentious House hearings last month, largely steering clear in his opening statement of addressing the dozen probes he is facing on topics such as the installation of a $43,000 soundproof phone booth in his office, a cut-rate condo rental from a lobbyist previous year and his domestic and worldwide travel expenses.

"The individual that you're referring to is a longtime friend of my wife and myself", Pruitt said, explaining that Millan Hupp, a top scheduling aide, had searched for apartments for the EPA chief on her own time. "You have taken a common-sense approach to the environmental regulatory process", said Sen.

President Donald Trump expressed his confidence in Pruitt as recently as last week at a meeting with automakers, where Pruitt sat one seat away from Trump.

The EPA has spent about $3 million on Pruitt's 20-member full-time security detail. The protection team is several times larger than the one used by his predecessors and cost taxpayers at least $2 million a year ago for salaries alone, CNN has calculated.

Wednesday, Alaska's senior senator questioned the administrator of the EPA, Scott Pruitt, and voiced some concerns regarding the agency and how it was being handled under his leadership. Pell has pleaded "not guilty" for those charges.

Following those remarks, Pruitt largely worked to steer clear of questions involving his various ethics and spending scandals, instead emphasizing the Trump administration's goals and the success of the EPA in rolling back efforts like the Clean Power Plan and the Waters of the United States rule. "My honest apologies for causing any difficulty but we can not do open q&a from the crowd", Pruitt's scheduler emailed the host of one event Pruitt would attend.

Related Articles

  • Governor: Power outages from storms may take days to restore

    Governor: Power outages from storms may take days to restore

    At least five people, including an 11-year-old girl, were killed by falling trees resulting from severe weather on Tuesday. In New York's Grand Central Station, thousands were stranded when the Metro North railroad was shut down Tuesday evening.
    Police arrest 13 terror suspects

    Police arrest 13 terror suspects

    A large blast was heard hours after the attacks, which Mangera said was a bomb disposal squad "securing" a remaining device. On Monday, May 14, another coordinated suicide bombing attack was directed toward police headquarters in Surabaya .
    STDs Hit Record High in California

    STDs Hit Record High in California

    According to health officials, STDs are largely curable and can be easily prevented by taking measures to practice safe sex. Syphilis is categorized as primary, secondary, latent, and tertiary- and each stage has different signs and symptoms .
  • After US, Guatemala opens its embassy in Jerusalem

    After US, Guatemala opens its embassy in Jerusalem

    Paraguay is expected to follow the U.S and Guatemala's lead, and plans to relocate their embassy to Jerusalem in the coming weeks. It closed in 1980 following a United Nations Security Council resolution that called for such closures.
    Gabi: I hope this isn´t Griezmann´s last final with Atletico

    Gabi: I hope this isn´t Griezmann´s last final with Atletico

    Playing Atletico is a big event for us. "Today, of course, Atletico are favourites". We've proven that we could overcome some steep challenges.
    Barcelona to Play Mamelodi Sundowns in Mandela Centenary Cup

    Barcelona to Play Mamelodi Sundowns in Mandela Centenary Cup

    Gerard Pique and Philippe Coutinho were in the 11 for the second half and Messi joined the action near the end. Ter Stegen, Semedo, Mina, Alena, Digne, Sergio , D Suarez, Rakitic Iniesta, Dembele, L Suarez .
  • Hawaii ash plume erupts behind golfers in stunning photo

    Hawaii ash plume erupts behind golfers in stunning photo

    The Hawaiian Volcano Observatory reported that fissures opened just east of the Puna Geothermal Venture energy conversion plant. Hawaii's Kilauea volcano could have a major devastating eruption at "any time", the US Geographical Survey has said.
    Gaza violence: Fresh protests expected after deadly clashes

    Gaza violence: Fresh protests expected after deadly clashes

    He has called an emergency meeting of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation in Istanbul on Friday to discuss the Gaza violence. Principal deputy press secretary Raj Shah said, "Hamas bears the responsibility", adding, "Look, this is a propaganda attempt".
    Southampton v Manchester City - story of the match

    Southampton v Manchester City - story of the match

    Gabriel Jesus' victor on Sunday was City's 106 goal of the campaign, meaning they have scored an astonishing 2.79 goals per game. After finishing the season with a 1-0 win at Southampton , City also secured a record 32 wins in one campaign.
  • Spain Victory 'Special' - Hamilton

    Spain Victory 'Special' - Hamilton

    Mazepin was 0.6s clear of debutant Jack Aitken, with the Renault youngster sixth overall and managing 120 laps. Charles Leclerc of Sauber and Sergio Perez of Force India closed out the top 10.
    $500 mln settlement reached in Nassar sex abuse scandal

    $500 mln settlement reached in Nassar sex abuse scandal

    The settlement was announced Wednesday after two days of closed door sessions between lawyers for the university and survivors. He pleaded guilty to federal child pornography charges and 10 counts of criminal sexual conduct in MI courts.
    US Imposes Sanctions on Iran Central Bank Governor over Terror Links

    US Imposes Sanctions on Iran Central Bank Governor over Terror Links

    The United States classifies Lebanon's Shi'ite Muslim movement Hezbollah, which is backed by Iran, as a terrorist organization. The exact ramifications of the sanctions for Iran's economy were not immediately clear.