Rep. Gerry ConnollyGerald (Gerry) Edward ConnollyHouse Democrats miss chance to help McAuliffe Progressives see infrastructure vote next week Dem hopes for infrastructure vote hit brick wall MORE (D-Va.) on Thursday applauded Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Scott PruittEdward (Scott) Scott PruittUnderstanding the barriers between scientists, the public and the truth Overnight Energy & Environment — Biden makes return to pre-Trump national monument boundaries official Trump-era EPA board member sues over firing MORE's resignation, saying that Pruitt only stayed in his job for this long because President TrumpDonald TrumpPence: Supreme Court has chance to right 'historic wrong' with abortion ruling Prosecutor says during trial that actor Jussie Smollett staged 'fake hate crime' Overnight Defense & National Security — US, Iran return to negotiating table MORE "liked his zealotry" on deregulation.
Scott Pruitt's reign of venality is finally over. He made swamp creatures blush with his shameless excesses. All tolerated because Trump liked his zealotry. Shame.— Gerry Connolly (@GerryConnolly) July 5, 2018
His comments came just moments after Trump announced Pruitt's resignation on Twitter. Pruitt resigned amidst a series of damaging scandals over his spending, ethics and management at the agency.
Pruitt's decision comes as more than a dozen investigations, including from the EPA’s Office of Inspector General, the U.S. Office of Special Counsel and the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, focus on his controversies.
Last weekend, the top ethics official at the EPA, Kevin Minoli, also called for an investigation into Pruitt over his $50-a-night rental of a Capitol Hill condominium from the wife of a prominent energy lobbyist, taxpayer spending on travel and allegations that Pruitt had aides help him with personal matters.
In his resignation letter, Pruitt said it had "been an honor to serve you in the cabinet as Administrator of the EPA. Truly, your confidence in me has blessed me personally and enabled me to advance your agenda beyond what anyone anticipated at the beginning of your Administration."
Connolly had been highly critical of Pruitt during Pruitt's time as the head of the EPA. In April, he called for the president to "dump Pruitt" in an op-ed for The Hill.
"It is time for a reset," Connolly wrote. "I can think of no better gift for the American people than for the president to dump Mr. Pruitt."