White House: 'I can't speak to the future of Scott Pruitt'

- April 05, 2018

A White House spokesman declined to weigh in on the future of embattled Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt on Thursday, as the agency chief continues to battle ethics scandals.

After White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders told reporters Wednesday that "the president's not" OK with reports the agency chief rented a condo from a lobbyist for $50 a night, deputy press secretary Hogan Gidley was pressed to comment on Pruitt's status at the agency.

“I can't speak to the future of Scott Pruitt," Gidley told Fox News in an interview. "I can just talk about where we are now and that is that the White House is aware of these reports."

The remarks come amid a series of damaging revelations about Pruitt's lavish travels, expensive spending habits and ties to lobbyists during his tenure at the EPA, which has thrown his job security into question.

Sanders said at Wednesday's press briefing that the White House is "reviewing the situation" with Pruitt and taking the matter "seriously."

Gidley told Fox News that "some questions need to be answered" regarding Pruitt's conduct, saying the president would not tolerate unethical behavior in his administration.

“The president wants and demands quite frankly from his Cabinet and from all his staffers the highest level of ethics, ethical behavior, we want people to comply with ethics," Gidley said. "But in the meantime, we’re looking into this because the president wants that level of accountability for everyone who works there."

The White House aide noted however that Trump was pleased with Pruitt's efforts to rollback environmental regulations at the EPA.


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