President-elect Donald Trump has selected Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt, a critic of the Environmental Protection Agency, to run the agency, according to Trump senior adviser Kellyanne Conway.
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"Attorney General Pruitt has great qualifications and a good record as the AG of Oklahoma," Conway told reporters in the lobby of Trump Tower in New York City on Wednesday night. "There were a number of qualified candidates for that particular position that the president-elect interviewed, and he settled on Attorney General Pruitt, and we'll look forward to the confirmation hearings."
Pruitt's selection may cause alarm in some circles; his bio on his website touts him as a "leading advocate against the EPA's activist agenda."
As attorney general, Pruitt had Oklahoma join 27 other states in suing the federal government over implementation of regulations aimed at combating climate change. He argued that those regulations violate citizens' property rights and stifle the oil and gas industries that largely drive his state's economy.
Pruitt's actions largely mirror Trump's rhetoric on the campaign trail, framing the EPA as a too-powerful agency pursuing an ideological agenda based on what he considers dubious science.
Environmental groups were quick to condemn the decision, with one comparing it to "putting the fox in charge of the chicken coop." The news of Pruitt's selection comes just one day after Trump's one-on-one meeting with climate advocate former Vice President Al Gore.
Repeated calls to Pruitt's office by ABC News for comment were not returned.