President-elect Donald J. Trump will nominate Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt as the new administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), People’s Pundit Daily confirmed. The decision to tap AG Pruitt is one that suggests the New York businessman intends to make good on his campaign promises to coal country and one that earned the president-elect approval from some of his most staunch critics during the Republican primary.
“The EPA’s reign of regulatory malpractice is coming to an end,” said Club for Growth president David McIntosh. “The nomination of Scott Pruitt is a brilliant move by the president-elect, and one that will reap benefits for the American economy.”
The Club for Growth has been a fierce advocate for free-market principles and opponent of burdensome, excessive regulations coming out of the EPA. Mr. Pruitt, 48, has been a critic of the “activist agenda” at the EPA. Since 2011, Mr. Pruitt has repeatedly filed suit against the EPA and joined with other Republican attorneys general in opposing the Clean Power Plan and Clean Water Act.
“Too often the EPA was the Obama Administration’s weapon of choice for crushing the private sector. We are confident that Scott Pruitt, who has done yeoman’s work in fighting EPA overreach, will restore the wise balance between necessary environmental protections and the operation of free-market industries that cause America to prosper.”
The Supreme Court agreed the EPA has acted outside their authority during the Obama administration in 2014 and again in 2015.
Regarding the latter, the Court ruled against the Obama administration, which sought to use the EPA to limit certain power plant emissions. The court said the agency “unreasonably” failed to consider the cost of the regulations that were allegedly aimed at curbing emissions of mercury and other hazardous air pollutants. Writing for the majority, the late Justice Antonin Scalia said it was not “appropriate and necessary” for the administration and the EPA to regulate such emissions by imposing billions of dollars of economic costs in return for a few dollars in health or environmental benefits.
“EPA must consider cost — including cost of compliance — before deciding whether regulation is appropriate and necessary,” Justice Scalia wrote. “One would not say that it is even rational, never mind ‘appropriate,’ to impose billions of dollars in economic costs in return for a few dollars in health or environmental benefits.”
Mr. Pruitt argued further regulations on carbon emissions violates state sovereignty, increases electricity rates and poses a threat to the reliability of the nation’s power grid to the point they “create economic havoc.”
But not everyone is happy with the selection, though it wasn’t as if President-elect Trump could ever please the environmental lobby. Public Citizen, what has been characterized as a radical leftwing green group, called Mr. Trump’s decision to tap Mr. Pruitt a “terrible choice.”
“Pruitt is cozy with the oil and gas industry and treats the EPA like an enemy,” the group said in a statement.
Nevertheless, President-elect Trump won the 2016 presidential election promising to put “America First” and that means focusing on burdensome regulations that stifle growth and destroy industries that support entire state economies, such as West Virginia, Ohio and Pennsylvania.
Business voices in his home state praised Mr. Pruitt and the decision to choose him as the next EPA administrator.
“Scott Pruitt is a businessman and public servant and understands the impact regulation and legislation have in the business world,” Jeffrey McDougall, chairman of the Oklahoma Independent Petroleum Association said. “His appointment will put rational and reasonable regulation at the forefront.”