EPA acting Administrator Andrew Wheeler, smiles as he is recognized by President Donald Trump during a Medal of Freedom ceremony in the East Room of the White House in Washington, Friday, Nov. 16, 2018. Also pictured is Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, left, and U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer, second from right. Wheeler, a former congressional aide and lobbyist who has led the EPA since his scandal-plagued predecessor resigned earlier this year, got Trump's nod for the permanent job. Trump made the announcement in passing at a White House ceremony for Presidential Medal of Freedom honorees. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

Trump: EPA's acting chief will be named to post permanently

November 17, 2018 - 2:05 am

WASHINGTON (AP) — Andrew Wheeler, a former congressional aide and lobbyist who has led the Environmental Protection Agency since his scandal-plagued predecessor resigned earlier this year, has gotten President Donald Trump's nod for the permanent job.

Wheeler's promotion from acting to permanent EPA chief would keep him as a methodical and effective agent in Trump's mission of rolling back environmental regulations that the administration regards as burdensome to business. Environmental groups quickly voiced their opposition.

A veteran on Capitol Hill, Wheeler worked from 1995 to 2009 as a staffer for Republican Sen. Jim Inhofe of Oklahoma, a fervent denier of man-made climate change, and then for the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee. Wheeler later worked as a lobbyist, including for coal giant Murray Energy Corp.

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