Does Adam Putnam Still Back His Friend Scott Pruitt?
Putnam Championed Pruitt’s Nomination to EPA, Now is Silent on His Lobbyist Megascandal
Adam Putnam has long been one of Scott Pruitt’s biggest supporters in Florida. Last year when Donald Trump nominated Scott Pruitt to lead EPA, Putnam wrote a glowing op-ed in which he said that Pruitt has the “experience, understanding of the law and courage to get this out-of-control federal agency back on track.” In 2014, Putnam and Pruitt even appeared together before Congress to testify against the EPA’s Waters of the United States rule.
While Putnam was once happy to champion Pruitt’s EPA nomination, he has been silent about Pruitt’s shady decision to rent a room from a top energy lobbyist in a tony D.C. townhouse for only $50/day. Pruitt’s ethical lapse has led Florida Republicans to call for his resignation. Representative Ileana Ros-Lehtinen told Huffington Post that “when scandals and distractions overtake a public servant’s ability to function effectively, another person should fill that role.” Even the Trump White House has refused to defend Pruitt.
Meanwhile, Putnam has said nothing about his ally.
“Last year, Adam Putnam promised Floridians that Scott Pruitt would clean up the mess at the EPA. He was clearly wrong,” said FDP spokesperson Kevin Donohoe. “It’s time for Putnam to break his silence, admit he was wrong, and make clear that Pruitt’s corruption has no place in D.C. or Tallahassee.”
Putnam isn’t the only Republican gubernatorial candidate who has been silent: Ron DeSantis has also said nothing. That may be because DeSantis has a living situation scandal of his own. Last month, Politico reported that DeSantis lived in “a condo owned by campaign donors who are top executives at a defense contractor that lobbies the federal government.”
ADAM PUTNAM’S RECORD OF SUPPORTING SCOTT PRUITT:
Putnam Orlando Sentinel Op-Ed: New EPA Chief Pruitt Will Lead an Energy Revolution. [Orlando Sentinel, Putnam op-ed, 1/4/17]
In January 2017, Putnam Wrote, “With Scott Pruitt in Charge, We Can Finally Unravel the Mess of the EPA.” According to an Orlando Sentinel op-ed written by Putnam, “But this nightmare is almost over. With Scott Pruitt in charge, we can finally unravel the mess of the EPA, and begin developing and implementing thoughtful policies that will make measurable improvements to our natural resources and unleash an energy revolution that will bring jobs and higher wages to Americans.” [Orlando Sentinel, Putnam op-ed, 1/4/17]
Putnam: “The End of the Obama EPA Cannot Come Soon Enough.” According to an op-ed Putnam wrote in the Orlando Sentinel, “In reality, though, this EPA’s financial blow affects every American, as it negatively impacts our gross do-mestic product, kills thousands of jobs and increases the cost of living in our country. Not only do the EPA rules have serious economic consequences, but they are far outside the EPA’s scope of authority, violating states’ rights and, in many cases, violating the U.S. Constitution. The end of the Obama EPA cannot come soon enough.” [Orlando Sentinel, Putnam op-ed, 1/4/17]
Putnam: “Thankfully” Pruitt Has “Experience, Understanding of the Law and Courage to Get This Out-Of-Control Federal Agency Back on Track.” According to an op-ed Putnam wrote in the Orlando Sentinel, “Thankfully, appointed EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt has the experience, understanding of the law and courage to get this out-of-control federal agency back on track.” [Orlando Sentinel, Putnam op-ed, 1/4/17]
Putnam: Pruitt Has “Balanced Approach to Regulation.” According to an op-ed Putnam wrote in the Orlando Sentinel, “During this joint congressional hearing of the House and Senate, I witnessed firsthand Pruitt’s balanced approach to regulation, one that conserves our natural resources and protects the environment, while also fostering economic growth and, most important, protecting states’ rights.” He has a clear understanding where it is appropriate for the EPA to assert a role when it is necessary to protect our natural resources.” [Orlando Sentinel, Putnam op-ed, 1/4/17]