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techkenyot.com September 21, 2018


Senator to new acting EPA leader: 'Restore confidence' in agency's mission

09 July 2018, 08:38 | Edward Lowe

Senator to new acting EPA leader: 'Restore confidence' in agency's mission

Embattled Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt directly appealed to President Donald Trump this spring to fire Attorney General Jeff Sessions and let him run the Department of Justice instead

Wheeler's public statements show him to be a skeptic, like Pruitt, about the extent to which coal, oil and gas emissions drive climate change, something that mainstream science says is indisputable fact.

"I have accepted the resignation of Scott Pruitt as the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency", tweeted the president, ending months of speculation about the future of the man he tasked with dismantling Barack Obama's green legacy.

Touting Wheeler as "the flawless choice to serve as acting administrator", Inhofe notes that the two worked together for 14 years.

Inhofe expressed his support for his former staffer on Thursday, calling Wheeler "the ideal choice" to serve as acting EPA administrator. "We have made tremendous progress and the future of the EPA is very bright!" A Senate vote would be required if he is nominated to lead the agency permanently.

As Wheeler prepares to take charge of EPA, the company he once lobbied for is trying to win contracts to clean up abandoned uranium mines, according to EFI's website and its CEO, Mark Chalmers.

He also reportedly misused government funds by repeatedly travelling first-class and booking luxury hotel suites. Edward Markey (D) of MA.

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Pruitt may have been the worst EPA chief ever, some believe. Wheeler said Trump "hasn't been that successful" in his business endeavors and had "more baggage then all of the other Republican candidates combined".

Wheeler is not someone who has sought the spotlight.

Although Pruitt has always been known for his high-profile appearances dating back to his successful run for Oklahoma attorney general, reports paint Wheeler as a quieter political actor.

An Ohio native, Wheeler served as a special assistant in the EPA's Pollution Prevention and Toxics office in the early 1990s before moving over to the Senate environment panel, where he eventually became GOP staff director under Sen.

Wheeler worked for Oklahoma Sen.

Senator Inhofe, who dismisses global warming as a hoax and famously tossed a snowball on the Senate floor to prove his point, hailed Wheeler's ascension to EPA chief.

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While Wheeler did not lobby the EPA while he was under consideration for a job at the agency, his lobbying firm's colleagues did.

In his role as a Murray Energy lobbyist, Wheeler also attended a meeting with Energy Secretary Rick Perry in March 2017 where Robert Murray presented Perry with an action plan that would directly benefit his coal company.

As a lobbyist for EFI, Wheeler was present at a meeting he helped arrange in July 2017 with officials from the Department of Interior, according to emails obtained by the Sierra Club through the Freedom of Information Act, and confirmed by Wheeler to CNN.

"We see Mr. Wheeler as fitting a very typical pattern of behavior", said Chris Saeger, of the Western Values Project.

"He was clearly unfit for the position of public trust that he was in as administrator of the EPA", said Spaulding.

Norman Eisen, CREW's chairman, in May wrote an op-ed with two other senior members of the watchdog group that said, " In any normal administration, Pruitt would be long gone. "Americans will not tolerate another EPA administrator whose primary goal is to fight the core mission of the EPA".

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