It seems the flames have not yet been extinguished, as the EPA issued a press release Thursday morning in which it “accidentally” roasted Trump’s climate change plans.
In the statement, the agency jumbled the quotes of two senators with vastly different perspectives. Instead of printing the quote of Republican West Virginia Sen. Shelley Moore Capito — which praised Trump’s efforts — the release included the harshly critical remarks of Democratic Delaware Sen. Tom Carper.
"President Trump has chosen to recklessly bury his head in the sand. Walking away from the Clean Power Plan and other climate initiatives... is not just irresponsible — it is irrational," Carper said of the president’s order to begin dismantling greenhouse gas emissions reduction programs and other Obama-era policies meant to reduce pollution.
While Carper’s remarks may be an accurate perspective on the issue, they did not reflect the message that the agency intended to send in its release. Furthermore, the agency attributed the quote to the wrong senator and misspelled her name.
The quote is from Sen. Carper, not Capito. Also the release misspells Capito's first name. What a mess https://t.co/Mbrw8fpMal— Betsy Woodruff (@woodruffbets) March 30, 2017
After being called out for the blunder on Twitter, the EPA released a correction. The Capito quote they, apparently, meant to use reads as follows:
EPA sends a correction: pic.twitter.com/hvJNYb6LGh— Betsy Woodruff (@woodruffbets) March 30, 2017
As you can see, Capito’s statement is much more supportive than Carper’s and paints Trump’s climate plans in a positive light.
After correcting the mistake, the EPA apologized for the mix-up.
"We apologize for the error and are making sure that our process is improved as we build out our team," the statement read.
Despite what the agency claims, one might be inclined to believe that the original press release was not a mistake at all, but rather a purposeful jab at Trump amid the tension between his administration and the EPA.
It definitely wouldn’t be the first time the agency defied the president. Earlier this year, the EPA joined several other federal agencies in creating “alt” Twitter accounts as a loophole to Trump’s gag order that prevented them from releasing certain information to the public.
Alas, the EPA will likely never admit if this slip up was intentional, but the notion that someone neglected to proofread an official press release before issuing it to the public seems quite unlikely.