EPA chief Scott Pruitt has reportedly been using a taxpayer funded staffer to run personal errands for him, including shopping for a mattress and booking a personal flight to the Rose Bowl.— Just Joe (@dannon787) June 4, 2018
"certainly looking into the matter" --Sarah Sanders at #PressBriefing #MondayMotivation pic.twitter.com/hjxPny2rPC
It appears that President Donald Trump’s pick to head the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) really likes to send aides out on personal errands, even if the practice is illegal.
In a letter sent to the House Oversight Committee chairman, Rep. Trey Gowdy, the committee’s Democrats alleged that EPA chief Scott Pruitt used the help of his aide, Millan Hupp, to secure an “old mattress” belonging to the Trump International Hotel.
Hupp, who was still on the clock, was reportedly told to help Pruitt buy a mattress from the Trump Hotel.
“As I remember, the Administrator had spoken with someone at the Trump Hotel who had indicated that there could be a mattress that he could purchase, an old mattress that he could purchase,” Hupp told the committee.
Hupp was also reportedly told to scout housing for her boss and book personal trips.
Pruitt allegedly wanted a used “Trump Home Luxury Plush Euro Pillow Top” mattress, and while this is, in no way, official government business, Pruitt sent his aide on this mission.
As Vox reports, federal laws state that government officials should not request that subordinates perform personal tasks on their behalf. Employees are also not allowed to give their bosses gifts. As such, this incident could be seen as a violation of the law.
This accusation comes on the heels of several other federal probes into Pruitt's behavior as EPA chief.
In the past, he violated the law by installing a soundproof phone booth in his office. And, now that he’s the center of several other inquiries and probes into his behavior while working as a member of Trump’s administration, he has even set up a legal defense fund (which has already been challenged over ethical concerns).
Now that it seems he was also using aides for personal affairs on his behalf, it’s clear that he does not respect the office he holds — or the American taxpayer for that matter.
Banner / Thumbnail : Reuters / Al Drago