Trump’s pick for the role of the Administrator for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Scott Pruitt, continues to face more and more allegations of corrupt behavior.
The Republican politician has been accused of abusing his privileges on multiple occasions, namely for flying first-class unnecessarily. Pruitt has responded to such accusations, alleging that it was necessary for his safety to fly first class because of aggressive members of the public.
Now, news has emerged of Pruitt renting an energy lobbyist’s townhouse for fifty dollars a night – well below the market rental rate for the property.
Pruitt was using the property for around six months but only paid $6100 in total while typically the market rate would be around $5000 a month. The Capitol Hill condo is co-owned by Vicki Hart, whose husband is a lobbyist for energy and environmental concerns.
Considering that Scott Pruitt is the Administrator for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, this raises some ethical issues.
While both parties claim that the reason for such a reduced rent was due to Pruitt only paying for the single room he stayed in, sources have revealed that his daughter occupied a second room during her internship at the Whitehouse.
More questions have been raised about the nature of this arrangement and its unusual benefits for the Administrator of the EPA. Ultimately, such a deal would not be available on the open market, but both parties claim this arrangement has no ethical breach.
Many other members of the public disagree. Along with numerous allegations of Pruitt accepting gifts of travel, this situation only furthers an image of his disregard of public interest. And now, the EPA’s deputy chief-of-staff Kevin Chmielewski is stepping up after being put on unpaid leave by Pruitt.
Chmielewski is claiming that Pruitt often made travelling decisions for work based on a personal interest of where he wanted to go. If this is true, Pruitt is in a lot of heat for his purpose of using of taxpayer dollars.