Accuracy in Media

Is EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt another arrogant politician freely blowing the taxpayers’ hard-earned money on unnecessary extravagances, or has the media correctly identified him as one of the most effective proponents of President Trump’s agenda and become obsessed with bringing him down?

Julie Kelly at American Greatness says it’s the latter.

In “The NYT’s ‘Ridiculous’ Obsession with Scott Pruitt,” she takes the measure of the daily drumbeat at the Grey Lady for Pruitt’s ouster and concludes: “The paper is on a mission to not only force Pruitt’s ouster but damage his reputation so badly that it’s beyond repair – and certainly keep him from taking the helm of the Trump Justice Department.”

She pointed to an unsigned editorial in Tuesday’s New York Times headlined, “Scott Pruitt Has Become Ridiculous” as a sign the Times itself has moved over to the ridiculous side.

Pruitt “is by common consensus the worst of the ideologues and mediocrities President Trump chose to populate his cabinet” as well as “not just an industry lap dog but also an arrogant and vengeful bully and small-time grifter, bent on chiseling the taxpayer to suit his lifestyle and warm his ego.”

The one slice of good news about Pruitt, the Times says, “is that for all his swagger he has actually accomplished very little in terms of actual policy – a wholly desirable outcome, from our standpoint.”

But this came only “after months of claiming Pruitt’s actions will destroy the planet and sicken children,” Kelly wrote.

The Times seeks to bury Pruitt in negative press, Kelly wrote. It has written 85 pieces on Pruitt in the first 18 days of April alone and more than 400 since he was nominated as EPA Administrator in December 2016.

This included an article on Sunday, Kelly wrote, in which the Times quoted the partner of a civil rights attorney who set himself on fire as saying the victim had been “distraught recently over the national politics of climate change and all that’s going on with the Trump administration and the rollback by Pruitt at the Environmental Protection Agency.”

Kelly responded: “Now Pruitt is responsible for a 60-year-old man setting himself on fire in a Brooklyn park? And folks wonder why he needs extra security.”

It’s not just the Times, of course. The Washington Post has become ever more shrill in its attacks on Pruitt.

In The Energy 202, out Thursday, the Post headlined its piece, “Scott Pruitt praises emissions drop but still hasn’t conceded climate change is real.”

It reported on a tweet in which Pruitt wrote, “2018 report on GHG (greenhouse gas) emissions confirms @POTUS critics are wrong again – top-down regs like CPP or misguided int’l agreements like Paris Accord aren’t the solution. American ingenuity & tech breakthroughs have made US the world leader in energy dominance while reducing emissions.”

It was a “head-turning statement,” the Post reported, that the EPA Administrator would praise the country’s reduction of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases. Why? Because, “quite controversially,” Pruitt “has not conceded the reality of climate change.”

So air pollution dropping matters only if you believe in climate change, according to The Washington Post. Besides, Pruitt was taking credit for things for which he’s not responsible, they said.

Republicans, including Pruitt, have encouraged fracking for years, and Democrats, under President Obama and subsequently, have fought it at every turn.

But Pruitt should not take credit for promoting fracking because “much of the early research for that extraction technique was paid for by the Energy Department’s Office of Fossil Energy – whose budget, ironically, the Trump administration proposed slashing two years in a row.”

Trump promised to bring back coal, and natural gas competes with coal as a power source, therefore, Pruitt should not point out that international agreements and expensive regulations, such as the Clean Power Plan, contributed nothing to the reduction, and American ingenuity and investment accounted for nearly all of it.

Moreover, his support is eroding, the Post says, because 170 members of Congress have signed a letter calling on him to resign. All are Democrats.

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