'Start Here': EPA director Scott Pruitt resigns amid multiple controversies

Calls for Pruitt's ouster had been growing louder.

July 06, 2018, 5:02 AM

It's Friday, July 6, 2018. Here are some of the stories we're talking about on ABC News' new daily podcast, "Start Here."

1. Pruitt resigns

After months of growing ethics concerns and calls for him to step down, EPA administrator Scott Pruitt resigned Thursday, citing "unprecedented" and "unrelenting attacks" in a letter to President Donald Trump.

The EPA chief had unfailing public support from the president amid questions about sweetheart deals on apartments, first-class flights, raises for key staffers and more -- so what changed?

ABC News Chief White House Correspondent Jonathan Karl walks us through the timeline of events leading to Pruitt's resignation.

"Start Here" is a daily ABC News podcast hosted by Brad Mielke featuring original reporting on stories that are driving the national conversation. Listen for FREE on the ABC News app, Apple Podcasts, TuneIn, Spotify, Stitcher, Google Play Music, iHeartRadio -- or ask Alexa: "Play 'Start Here.'"

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PHOTO: President Donald Trump waits to greet King Abdullah II of Jordan and Rania Al-Abdullah, Queen of Jordan, not pictured, at the South Portico of the White House in Washington, June 25, 2018.
President Donald Trump waits to greet King Abdullah II of Jordan and Rania Al-Abdullah, Queen of Jordan, not pictured, at the South Portico of the White House in Washington, June 25, 2018.
Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg via Getty Images, FILE

2. Countdown to reunification

The Department of Health & Human Services announced Thursday it's now holding fewer than 3,000 immigrant children separated from their parents, including 100 children under 5 years old. Officials have been working to meet court-ordered deadlines for reunification, but it's still unclear how exactly the government will reunite families, according to ABC News' Geneva Sands, who covers immigration.

3. Poison plot widening?

In the U.K., there is finger-pointing and international intrigue after a couple suddenly collapsed following their apparent contact with a deadly nerve agent, the same used against a former Russian spy and his daughter back in March.

ABC News' Eva Pilgrim spoke to a chemist who says this particular chemical is especially dangerous and can stand the test of time.

PHOTO: Police on the scene at Muggleton Road where a major incident was declared after a man and woman were exposed to an unknown substance on July 4, 2018, in Amesbury, England.
Police on the scene at Muggleton Road where a major incident was declared after a man and woman were exposed to an unknown substance on July 4, 2018, in Amesbury, England.
Jack Taylor/Getty Images

4. Trade war begins

At midnight last night, Trump followed through on his threat to tax billions of dollars’ worth of Chinese goods. The tariffs will largely affect Chinese tech companies, but what does the brewing trade war mean for the rest of us?

Matt Miskin, a market strategist at John Hancock Investments, helps us make sense of tariffs and how our wallets will be impacted.

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