Written by Steve Byas
Tuesday, 24 October 2017
Democrat members of Congress are upset about the multiple death threats against Scott Pruitt (shown), the director of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Actually, not so much the death threats, but the cost of protecting Pruitt, who has ruffled the feathers of the environmentalist lobby in the United States.
The EPA inspector general’s office announced that Pruitt has been the victim of more death threats than any other EPA director in history. More than 70 investigations have been launched into the potential fatal attacks. One would think that the Democrats in Congress would be concerned about the possibility that a member of the Trump administration could be attacked by murderous extremists. Yet, instead of expressions of disgust that mere political differences could lead to threats of violence against a member of the executive branch, their concern centers on the cost of the salaries of the increased number of security officers — estimated at more than $2 million annually.
Democrat members of Congress said in a statement, “This culture, which is reflected in travel and lifestyle choices from the President on down, seem[s] to embolden senior, politically appointed officials of the Trump Administration to undertake lavish spending of taxpayer dollars for their sole and personal benefit.”
Obtaining protection after receiving death threats is undertaking “lavish spending of taxpayer dollars” for their “sole and personal benefit”?
Can one imagine how CNN or MSNBC would have reacted had a member of the Obama administration been subjected to scores of death threats, and Republican members of Congress responded with similar remarks?
No previous EPA director has needed an around-the-clock security detail.
Why is Pruitt on the receiving end of so many threats? Because he is an opponent of the radical left-wing agenda of the environmental lobby, and has been since before he gained his present position. As attorney general of Oklahoma, Pruitt took a leadership role against the Obama administration's environmental regulations for power plants, and also challenged the president’s water regulations and standards for ground-level ozone pollution, haze, and methane.
After Obama ordered a 32-percent cut in CO2 emissions by fossil-fuel industries by 2030, candidate Trump called the harsh regulation a “war on coal.” Pruitt also condemned the plan, arguing that it would have shut down numerous coal-fired plants in Oklahoma and raised the price of electricity for consumers.
“This is an effort that I think is extraordinary in cost, extraordinary in scope, and I think extraordinary as it relates to the intrusion into the sovereignty of the states,” Pruitt charged at the time, in commenting about the rule of Obama’s EPA, which he contended “coerced” the states to reorganize their electricity systems by “commandeering” state resources.
Pruitt stated that the rule was unconstitutional, explaining: “It’s an invasion … of the state regulatory domain, and it’s something that is unique and breathtaking as it relates to the kind of rulemaking the EPA has engaged in historically.” Pruitt led fellow Republican attorneys general in persuading the Supreme Court to put a hold on the rule.
Another battle taken on by Pruitt was a legal fight against the Clean Water Rule of the EPA, which claimed that small waterways such as wetlands and streams are under federal, not state, jurisdiction. To that claim, Pruitt retorted, “This regulation usurps the state’s authority over its land and water use, and triggers numerous and costly obligations under the [Clean Water] Act for the state and its citizens.” He managed to convince a federal court to block its implementation, as well.
Finally, Pruitt is skeptical [sic] of the assertions of former Vice President Al Gore and others like him on the issue of so-called climate change. Writing in the Tulsa World in May of last year, Pruitt asserted that the debate on global warming is “far from settled,” and that “scientists continue to disagree about the degree and extent of global warming and it connections to the actions of mankind.”
Pruitt was known in Oklahoma as a close political ally of fellow Tulsan Senator Jim Inhofe, whose book The Greatest Hoax refutes the agenda of those who believe in anthropogenic climate change.
In short, the reason Pruitt is being targeted for violence is his opposition to the radical environmentalists’ agenda, which is no less than increased government control of the energy industry, and over the personal lives of American citizens.
The reaction of the Democrats to these death threats is troubling. Is this the direction in which our politics is heading? Now, if the Left dislikes a political office-holder, they will oppose spending sufficient money to protect that person’s life?
If so, it is one of the few things they don’t want to spend the taxpayers’ money on.
Photo: AP Images