Scott Pruitt, President Trump’s pick to lead the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), reportedly made false statements under oath to the Senate, according to Fusion’s Daniel Rivero.
Pruitt, the Attorney General of Oklahoma known for 14 lawsuits designed to fight regulations and cleanup efforts by the agency he hopes to lead, made the alleged false statement when referring to an ongoing environmental lawsuit involving several poultry companies in Arkansas.
Pruitt’s predecessor, Drew Edmondson, brought the case against Tyson Foods, Cargill Turkey, and 12 other poultry companies. Edmondson alleged that they had been dumping 300,000 tons of poultry waste (read: bird poop) per year into the Illinois River upstream of Oklahoma.
The case, brought before federal judge Gregory Frizzell, was fought entirely before Pruitt took office in 2011. However, years later, the judge has yet to issue a ruling.
During Pruitt’s campaign to become state attorney general, he received $40,000 in donations from those companies and law firms representing them, according to The New York Times. It’s been alleged that he then worked to undermine the case.
In response to questions from Senator Cory Booker (D-New Jersey) during his confirmation hearing, Pruitt said, “I have taken no action to undermine that case. I have done nothing but file briefs in support of the court making a decision.”
Rivero and his team found no evidence that Pruitt or his office had filed any briefs in support of making a decision with the case, apparently contradicting his claim under oath to the Senate.
Pruitt’s office did not immediately return a request for comment.