Pruitt Gained — and Keeps — Trump’s Favor By Fierce Allegiance

"In the run-up to the decision to pull out of the Paris climate agreement last May, President Trump wanted the opinion of Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt. But when the president’s personal secretary called the EPA, Pruitt wasn’t around.

As it turned out, he was already in the White House, having just ordered the ice cream special in the Mess, where he often dined hoping for just such an opportunity to talk to the president. Once in the Oval Office, Pruitt reinforced Trump’s desire to leave the accord, arguing against other advisers so long that an aide had to bring a cup so his melting ice cream wouldn’t drip onto the presidential rug.

Pruitt’s actions that May day are emblematic of how he has built his relationship with Trump — ingratiating himself personally, extolling the president’s abilities and strongly backing him on policy in meetings and in regular one-on-one conversations. That approach also helps explain how the former Oklahoma attorney general has kept his job amid a bevy of transgressions that are similar to, or worse than, those that have cost other Cabinet officials their positions."

Josh Dawsey, Juliet Eilperin, and Brady Dennis report for the Washington Post June 16, 2018.

Source: Washington Post, 06/18/2018