Pruitt's security blanket - POLITICO

With help from Anthony Adragna

PRUITT'S SECURITY BLANKET: EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt has come under fire for his variousethicsscandals but current and former agency officials say he wasn't alone in some of the decisions. Instead, they say, Pruitt was goaded by his security guard, a colorful figure who has laid out his own questionable ethics in a self-published autobiography. Pasquale Nino Perrotta, a former Secret Service agent, who also played a key role in the investigation into mobster John "Junior" Gotti in the 1990s, has been running Pruitt's security shop, often egging him on when others raised questions about his decisions, Pro's Emily Holden and Alex Guillén report.

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Agency spokesman Jahan Wilcox defended EPA's moves on Pruitt's security arrangements, calling them "similar to security protocol across the federal government. But Perrottas forceful personality and Pruitts expectations are both likely driving EPAs security spending, several sources tell Emily and Alex. Perrotta has accompanied Pruitt on flights and offered him advice on environmental policy and other agency matters, according to two of the sources. And one career official who recently retired, Ron Slotkin, said Perrotta repeatedly railed against any restrictions, including longstanding federal limits on spending and conduct. They would object to anything when we said, No, you cant do that or That would be wrong, Slotkin said. He added: Wed say, Its not a matter of legality, its e....

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