If Donald Trump’s announcement of picking Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt to be the new leader of the Environmental Protection Agency, it is a sign that the direction of the giant agency and what Pruitt and others have called “over-regulation by the EPA” will change drastically.
The 48-year old Pruitt will have to be confirmed by the U.S. Senate and he could become the highest-ranking Oklahoman in the executive branch. If Pruitt wins confirmation, his successor will have to be picked by Gov. Mary Fallin, unless she too is tapped by Trump to head a federal agency. And there has been the speculation she is considered to become the Secretary of the Interior following her own job interview earlier in the month with Trump in New York City.
Pruitt, the Attorney General who led lawsuit after lawsuit challenging the EPA’s regulations drew immediate support from Senators Jim Inhofe and James Lankford.
“Scott Pruitt has been a leader and a partner on environmental issues for many years,” commented Sen. Inhofe. “Pruitt has fought back against unconstitutional and overzealous environmental regulations like Waters of the U.S. and the Clean Power Plan.”
“Pruitt has served Oklahoma as a tireless defender of justice and law, and I am confident that he will serve America well,” said Sen. Lankford. “I look forward to working with him to restore a balanced approach to regulations and governance that fosters economic growth, advances energy independence and ensures stewardship for the environment.”
Inhofe is chairman of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee and said Pruitt demonstrated he is an expert on environmental laws and a champion of states’roles in implementing those lawsw.
“Scott is thoughtful, experienced and a natural pick for this role,” added Sen. Inhofe.
“Scott Pruitt knows the difference between a state responsibility and a federal responsibility,” said Lankford. “The American people deserve an EPA that rejects extreme activism and instead returns to its proper interpretation of environmental law.”