Republican senators on Wednesday said embattled Environmental Protection Agency chief Scott Pruitt should testify before the U.S. Congress to address the list of ethics scandals he faces, but stopped short of calling for his resignation.
Virginia Canter, executive branch ethics counsel for the public watchdog group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, said in an interview that Pruitt's having a full-time EPA employee "become the headhunter for his spouse" was "highly inappropriate" since the outcome of the search "would affect his financial interests". According to Vox, longtime Pruitt ally Senator James Inhofe (R-OK) talked to Ingraham about Pruitt on Wednesday during an interview on her radio show.
"Pruitt had aide, GOP donors help wife find job", the conservative Ingraham tweeted.
Farmers and ethanol producers in South Dakota held a good old fashioned tractor rally in Sioux Falls as Administrator Pruitt met with farmers in Reliance about 200 miles west. "Corn prices right now are at breakeven or below and we've lost 1.5 billion gallons of ethanol to exemptions that EPA has granted to refiners", said South Dakota Corn Growers president Troy Knecht. She also criticized Pruitt for using his office for personal benefit.
This is no way for any public official to treat taxpayers. "It also makes it practically impossible for Pruitt to make the case for the Trump administration's environmental policies - a case that we continue to believe deserves to be made".
Asked about the matter Tuesday, EPA spokesman Jahan Wilcox said in a statement, "I would refer you to outside counsel".
After suggesting that Pruitt may need to resign, Inhofe said, "Andrew Wheeler is really good too and that might be a good swap".
During a regular press conference, House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wisc., deflected questions about Pruitt's controversies.
A spokesman for the Judicial Crisis Network confirmed Tuesday that it employed the onetime school nurse "temporarily as an independent contractor, " but it did not disclose via e-mail how long she worked there or what she was paid.
"Scott Pruitt is doing a great job within the walls of the EPA".
Inhofe said he would support congressional hearings to examine Pruitt's conduct but that was up to Sen. "I mean, we're setting records", said Trump last week. I have seen these things.
All of this fits a Washington pattern, said former congressman, now-lobbyist Tom Davis.
"It looks to me like the snowball is rolling down hill and it's just gathering more and more", said Davis.