Quantcast
Environmental News for a Healthier Planet and Life

Help Support EcoWatch

Pruitt Called Trump a Threat to the Constitution, Leaked Audio Reveals

Popular
Pruitt Called Trump a Threat to the Constitution, Leaked Audio Reveals
"There are a great many Americans who share the concerns that you expressed in that interview," Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) told Pruitt. CSPAN / Screengrab

By Jake Johnson

Given U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) chief Scott Pruitt's lengthy record of "lying his ass off" about climate change for the benefit of his pals in the fossil fuel industry, one could be forgiven for believing that he is incapable of honesty.

But leaked audio from a radio interview Pruitt gave in February 2016—in which he said Donald Trump "would be more abusive to the Constitution than Barack Obama"—appears to provide evidence that he is, in fact, "capable of telling the truth."


According to a transcript of the interview made public by the corporate watchdog group Documented for the first time on Tuesday, Pruitt—then Oklahoma's attorney general—also agreed when radio host Pat Campbell characterized Trump as "dangerous" and a "bully."

"That's right," Pruitt said. "If Donald Trump is the nominee and eventually the president, he would take, I think unapologetic steps to use executive power to confront Congress in a way that is truly unconstitutional."

Pruitt's explosive remarks emerged just before he was set to appear at a hearing before the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, where he faced questions from Democrats about his aggressive moves to gut environmental regulations.

But Democrats also seized upon the golden opportunity to highlight Pruitt's remarks, particularly because they were released just hours before Trump is set to deliver his first State of the Union Address.

Following Pruitt's opening statement, which didn't once mention the words "climate change," Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) unveiled several posters displaying Pruitt's remarks and asked the EPA chief if he recalled making these comments about the man who now occupies the nation's highest office.

"There are a great many Americans who share the concerns that you expressed in that interview," Whitehouse said before rattling off Pruitt's comments.

In response, Pruitt insisted that he does not recall using those words, adding later that he would not "echo" those sentiments today.

Watch:

Shortly after Tuesday's hearing came to a close, Pruitt released a fawning statement hailing Trump as "the most consequential leader of our time."

"No one has done more to advance the rule of law than President Trump," Pruitt said. (Polls have shown that a majority of Americans believe Trump has attempted to "impede or obstruct" special counsel Robert Mueller's Russia probe.)

Reacting to Pruitt's newly-surfaced interview, Sierra Club executive director Michael Brune said "It's sad that Donald Trump is likely more upset about Scott Pruitt's accurate portrayal of him than Pruitt's relentless attacks on clean air, clean water, and the health of the American public.

"But Trump prizes his ego above anyone else, so Pruitt should watch his back," Brune added. "Keep your eyes on Trump moving forward—will Pruitt wind up in the dog house like Jeff Sessions, or out of a job like Tom Price?"

Reposted with permission from our media associate Common Dreams.

Plastic waste is bulldozed at a landfill. Needpix

The plastic recycling model was never economically viable, but oil and gas companies still touted it as a magic solution to waste, selling the American public a lie so the companies could keep pushing new plastic.

Read More Show Less

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

54% of parents with school-age children expressed concern that their children could fall behind academically, according to a poll conducted over the summer of 2020. Maria Symchych-Navrotska / Getty Images

By Pamela Davis-Kean

With in-person instruction becoming the exception rather than the norm, 54% of parents with school-age children expressed concern that their children could fall behind academically, according to a poll conducted over the summer of 2020. Initial projections from the Northwest Evaluation Association, which conducts research and creates commonly used standardized tests, suggest that these fears are well-grounded, especially for children from low-income families.

Read More Show Less

Trending

A teenager reads a school English assignment at home after her school shut down because of the COVID-19 pandemic on March 22, 2020 in Brooklyn, New York. Andrew Lichtenstein / Corbis via Getty Images

The pandemic has affected everyone, but mental health experts warn that youth and teens are suffering disproportionately and that depression and suicide rates are increasing.

Read More Show Less
In an ad released by Republican Voters Against Trump, former coronavirus task force member Olivia Troye roasted the president for his response. Republican Voters Against Trump / YouTube

Yet another former Trump administration staffer has come out with an endorsement for former Vice President Joe Biden, this time in response to President Donald Trump's handling of the coronavirus pandemic.

Read More Show Less
Climate Group

Every September for the past 11 years, non-profit the Climate Group has hosted Climate Week NYC, a chance for business, government, activist and community leaders to come together and discuss solutions to the climate crisis.

Read More Show Less

Support Ecowatch