Quantcast

Teacher Confronts Scott Pruitt at Restaurant, Asks Him to Resign

Politics
Kristin Mink / Facebook

Kristin Mink, a schoolteacher and mother of a 2-year-old, confronted Scott Pruitt, the embattled administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), at a restaurant in Washington, D.C., on Monday and urged him to resign.

In a video of the incident posted onto Facebook, Mink introduces her toddler to the EPA boss before she recites his extensive record of deregulating environmental protections and numerous scandals.


"This is my son. He loves animals. He loves clean air. He loves clean water. He loves clean water," Mink told Pruitt. "Meanwhile, you're slashing strong fuel standards for cars and trucks for the benefit of big corporations."

Pruitt, who was dining with a companion, is silent during the exchange.

Mink continues, "We deserve to have somebody at the EPA who actually does protect our environment, somebody who believes in climate change and takes it seriously for the benefit of all of us, including our children. I would urge you to resign before your scandals push you out."

Mink's Facebook profile shows she's a teacher at Sidwell Friends School. Pruitt, his companion and two security guards "fled" the restaurant after the exchange, according to Mink.

"EPA head Scott Pruitt was 3 tables away as I ate lunch with my child," she wrote in a caption accompanying the video footage. "I had to say something. This man is directly and significantly harming my child's—and every child's—health and future with decisions to roll back environmental regulations for the benefit of big corporations, while he uses taxpayer money to fund a lavish lifestyle."

She added, "He's corrupt, he's a liar, he's a climate change denier, and as a public servant, he should not be able to go out in public without hearing from the citizens he's hurting."

President Trump's EPA administrator, who infamously said carbon dioxide is "not a primary contributor" to climate change, has delayed, weakened or done away with critical EPA standards that protect our air, water and land.

Pruitt is also facing more than a dozen federal inquiries over his cozy relationships with industry leaders. Among his numerous controversies, he rented a Capitol Hill condo for $50 a night—well below market value—from the wife of a fossil fuel lobbyist. He also has a penchant of flying first class on the taxpayer dime.

EPA spokesman Lincoln Ferguson said Pruitt thanked Mink for her comments.

"Administrator Pruitt always welcomes input from Americans, whether they agree or disagree with the decisions being made at EPA," Ferguson said in a statement sent to USA TODAY. "This is evident by him listening to her comments and going on to thank her, which is not shown in the video. His leaving had nothing to do with the confrontation, he had simply finished his meal and needed to get back to EPA for a briefing."

Mink told HuffPost: "He had no defense. He had no explanation. He had no apology. He had nothing to say. When you are a government official ... you are supposed to be directly working for the citizens that you're serving. He's a public servant. When you're in that position, you should want to hear from the people who you are supposed to be taking care of."

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

Malala Yousafzai (left) and Greta Thunberg (right) met in Oxford University Tuesday. Wikimedia Commons / CC BY 2.0

What happens when a famous school striker meets a renowned campaigner for education rights?

Read More
A coal-fired power station blocks out a sunrise in the UK. sturti / E+ / Getty Images

According to a recent National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) report, the last time carbon dioxide levels were this high was 3 million years ago "when temperature was 2°–3°C (3.6°–5.4°F) higher than during the pre-industrial era, and sea level was 15–25 meters (50–80 feet) higher than today."

Read More
Sponsored
Passengers arrive in Los Angeles from Asia on Feb. 2. MARK RALSTON / AFP via Getty Images

The spread of the new coronavirus, COVID-19, could cause "severe" disruption to daily life in the U.S., public health officials warned Tuesday.

Read More
A harbour seal on an ice floe in Glacier Bay, Alaska. A new study shows that the climate crisis has warmed waters, changing ecosystems and crippling sea ice growth. Janette Hill / robertharding / Getty Images Plus

The climate crisis is accelerating the rate of change in Alaska's marine ecosystem far faster than scientists had previously thought, causing possibly irreversible changes, according to new research, as Newsweek reported.

Read More
Doctors report that only 1 in 4 children are getting the recommended 60 minutes of physical activity per day. Ronnie Kaufman / DigitalVision / Getty Images

By Dan Gray

Pediatricians are being urged to start writing "exercise prescriptions" for the children they see in their office.

Read More