President-Elect Taps OK Attorney General as New EPA Head

Last week, President-elect Donald Trump named Scott Pruitt, Oklahoma’s Attorney General, to become Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency.  Pruitt has a long history of supporting state primacy when it comes to environmental regulations and is known to oppose the Federal Clean Power Plan and Waters of the US.  He also strongly supports oil and gas interests in his state.  If confirmed as Administrator, Pruitt would likely push for fewer new rules at the Agency.  His position has been that many recent environmental decisions would have been better handled at the state level than through Federal regulation.  While it remains to be seen if he will be confirmed in the position, senior Democrats — notably Chuck Schumer (NY), Senate Minority Leader, and Bernie Sanders (I-VT) — have both called for Democrats to join forces in opposing Pruitt’s nomination.