Mid-Morning Briefing: Another W.H. Official Bites the Dust, While Pruitt Is Hanging By a Thread
The best thing that could have happened for the future prospects of EPA Chief Scott Pruitt was the raid yesterday of the offices of Michael Cohen, which finally ended a weeks’ long media siege against Pruitt. That’s a shame, too, because yesterday, the smoking gun finally availed itself (although at this point, it’s buried under the rubble of Cohen’s career). Recall that Scott Pruitt asked for raises in the tens of thousands of dollars for two of his aides. The White House denied those raises, but soon thereafter, a loophole was used inside of the EPA to give the raises to those aides.
Scott Pruitt denied any knowledge, which first of all is almost certainly a lie, and second of all, the Head of the EPA should know what the hell is going on inside the EPA. But this is the administration where the buck stops anywhere but “here.” I’m sure Hillary is somehow at fault.
Anyway, about that denial by Pruitt? From The Atlantic.
An email that suggests Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt personally signed off on a controversial pay raise for a favored aide last month is roiling the agency.
Pruitt’s Chief of Staff has since taken the blame, but that’s not going to hold for long. It also appears that there is no justification for Pruitt’s 24/7 security detail, either. Personally, I think Pruitt is just a diva.
As soon as the media gets a few free hours away from the burning dumpster fire in Michael Cohen’s office, they’ll return to this. At this point, in fact, Pruitt is only still around because Trump is keeping him out of spite, because everyone else is telling him to fire him.
Meanwhile, it appears that Trump’s Homeland Security Advisor, Tom Bossert, was fired this morning. Bossert is saying that he resigned, but word is that Bossert — who seemed to be on good footing with the President just last week — got pushed out by John Bolton, just days after Michael Anton, the national security council spokesman, also quit.
Homeland security adviser Tom Bossert “was pushed out,” multiple White House sources tell @jeffzeleny and @danmericaCNN. Bossert’s departure also caught officials at the National Security council, including those who worked directly with the homeland security adviser, off guard.— Jake Tapper (@jaketapper) April 10, 2018
Top Trump Departures*— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) April 10, 2018
Also note that Trump has canceled his trip to the Summit of Americas this Friday to stay home and “closely monitor” developments with Syria, which is code for, “Watch Fox News and stew alone about the Mueller probe.” The decision is said to have caught the White House staff off guard.
Basically, Trump didn’t want to go in the first place, and now he is using Syria as an excuse not to.