Speed Reads


John Oliver has some theories on why scandal-plagued EPA chief Scott Pruitt still has a job

Scott Pruitt has reportedly racked up a $3 million personal security bill at the EPA, including 24-hour security that accompanied him on personal visits to places like Disneyland. "I'm a little torn on this one," John Oliver said on Sunday's Last Week Tonight. "On the one hand, that does seem wasteful. But on the other hand, if anyone needs security at Disneyland, it's Scott Pruitt — a man who even Mickey and Minnie Mouse would tell to go f--k himself: 'Hey, Space Mountain is going to be under water in 10 years, you son of a bitch!'"

The recent raft of scandals make for "a pretty sudden fall from grace for Pruitt," beloved by conservatives for a "pro-industry stance so aggressive, in fact, that even though he is literally in charge of the EPA, his LinkedIn page still lists him as 'a leading advocate against the EPA's activist agenda,'" Oliver said.

And Pruitt's cleanup visit to Fox News ran into the buzzsaw of Ed Henry's aggressive questioning. "That is clearly not the Fox News tone that Pruitt was expecting," Oliver said. "That is the face of a man who thought he was walking into an Applebee's and ended up in an apple full of bees." And his excuse for his $50-a-night rental deal was "frankly pathetic," Oliver said, trying to be "fair" by showing some actual AirBnB rentals that go for $50 a night in D.C. — if you don't mind a lack of privacy, or a bed.

Still, "Pruitt somehow still has a job," Oliver said, speculating that President Trump is standing by his man either "because Pruitt is doing exactly what Trump wanted him to do, dismantling the EPA and wrecking the environment," or because Trump "now knows that if you want to get rid of Scott Pruitt, you're going to have to kick his door down, wake him from a nap, drag him out, and eventually change the f--king locks."