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EPA saw postcard addressed to Pruitt as ‘potentially threatening’
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) received a postcard addressed to Administrator Scott Pruitt last year regarding climate change and interpreted it as "potentially threatening."
The postcard featured a man standing on an iceberg.
The other side read, in handwritten pen, "Dear Mr. Pruitt, CLIMATE CHANGE IS REAL!!! We are watching you. For the sake of our planet, our children & our grandchildren, will you be a reasonable man? I repeat, we are watching you!"
It was signed by seven people, only with their first names.
The existence of the postcard, sent in February 2017 to the EPA's Seattle office, has previously been reported. The EPA's Office of Inspector General mentioned it in a list of potential threats Pruitt had received, which Pruitt and his aides have used to justify his unprecedented 24/7 security detail, which has cost taxpayers at least $3.5 million.
Documents, obtained by The Hill under a Freedom of Information Act request, show a photograph of the postcard for the first time.
Patrick Sullivan, assistant inspector general for investigations, sent the postcard to numerous EPA executives and close aides to Pruitt on March 3.
"Although the message does not contain a direct threat, the statements 'will you be a reasonable man?' and 'we are watching you' can be interpreted as intimidating and potentially threatening,' " Sullivan wrote.
The inspector general's list of potential threats to Pruitt, released last month, shows that agents investigated the postcard as a threat.
Agents "interviewed the subject who expressed regret and apologized for sending the postcard," reads the summary, authored also by Sullivan.
The inspector general noted that the subject "was wearing two handguns on [redacted] waist," and prosecutors declined to press charges.
The EPA did not respond to a request for comment on the postcard Friday.
The agency has previously defended the extraordinary security measures taken for Pruitt.
"Scott Pruitt has faced an unprecedented amount of death threats against him and his family," spokesman Jahan Wilcox said recently. "Americans should all agree that members of the president's Cabinet should be kept safe from these violent threats."