Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin has yet another significant appointment to make in her administration. After the controversial appointment of a new State Supreme Court Justice, she now has to name someone to replace Scott Pruitt as Attorney General following his confirmation to head the EPA.
“Scott Pruitt will do a great job as EPA administrator,” said Fallin. “He has been a tireless advocate of the precious balance of power between state and federal governments.”
Fallin said Pruitt has temporarily been replaced by First Assistant Attorney General Cara Rodriguez. Whoever she names will serve the remainder of Pruitt’s term which ends in January 2019.
“Scott Pruitt will do a great job as EPA administrator,” said Fallin. “He has been a tireless advocate of the precious balance of power between state and federal governments. In his six years as attorney general, he led the charge to combat the ever-increasing overreach of the federal government. As head of the EPA, he will ensure states retain their decision-making policies, instead of having them transferred to the federal government.”
Fallin now will consider appointing a successor to serve the remainder of Pruitt’s term, which ends in January 2019. It’s expected the governor will name a successor soon.
In the meantime, First Assistant Attorney General Cara Rodriguez has temporarily assumed the duties of attorney general.
Speculation grows over who might become the new Attorney General. The Oklahoman suggested Ryan Leonard, an unsuccessful candidate for Attorney General in 2010 might be one such consideration. Another would be A. J. Ferate, who is the general counsel for the Oklahoma Republican Party.
But there are others including Secretary of State Mike Hunter and formerly was the first assistant Attorney General under Pruitt before the governor named I’m her Secretary of State in 2016. He previously was Secretary of State in the Frank Keating administration. Of course, the governor knows that if she names Hunter or others within her current administration, it would mean a shakeup. If she were to name Hunter, it would result in naming a new Secretary of State.
There is other speculation surrounding Pruitt’s departure and that includes the question if he might take someone with him to Washington. There is some speculation that one of those could possibly be Preston Doerflinger, the Finance Secretary and director of the Office of Management and Enterprise Services. Were that to happen, who might get the OMES job? Denise Northrup?
The former longtime chief of staff to the governor was named last night to be chief operations officer for the Office of Management and Enterprise Services.