Kristin Mink was having lunch with her toddler in Washington, D.C., when she noticed who was sitting three tables over: EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt.
In a video posted to her Facebook account, Mink walks up to Pruitt and an unidentified companion and confronts him over his record of environmental deregulation and open corruption. According to Mink’s video, the confrontation occurred at Teaism in downtown Washington on Monday.
“Hi, I just wanted to urge you to resign because of what you’re doing to the environment and our country,” Mink says. “This is my son. He loves animals. He loves clean air. He loves clean water. Meanwhile, you’re slashing strong fuel standards for cars and trucks, for the benefit of big corporations.”
Pruitt’s smile turns to a frown as Mink speaks, and he glances nervously to the man sitting across from him.
“You’ve been paying about 50 bucks a night to stay in a D.C. condo that’s connected to an energy lobbying firm, while approving their dirty sands pipeline,” Mink continues, reading from notes. “We deserve to have somebody at the EPA who actually does protect our environment, somebody who believes in climate change and takes it seriously, for the benefit of all of us, including our children.”
Mink concluded: “So, I would urge you to resign before your scandals push you out.”
The video does not show Pruitt getting up and leaving the restaurant, but according to Mink, Pruitt and his two security guards left the restaurant before she returned to her seat.
Staff at Teaism could not immediately confirm whether Pruitt visited the restaurant on Monday, but said he had been seen there a few weeks ago.
Mink responded to a text message from Splinter with this statement:
As soon as my husband pointed out Pruitt sitting there, I knew instantly that I had to say something to him, it was just a question of what. His actions are the source of so much of my despair for my child’s future and frankly the future of humanity. He’s literally sacrificing our air and water, the well-being of coastal communities, all kinds of unique natural resources, for short-term personal gains. Buying stupid crap like a soundproof phone booth for his office and first-class plane tickets with taxpayer dollars, living in housing discounted for him by an energy group while he does favors for their clients. I honestly don’t know how he sleeps at night.
It feels very personal. That’s why I decided to introduce him to my son. Like, you are wrecking the earth THIS KID, every kid, will inherit.
We’ve also reached out to the EPA and will update if we hear back.
Additional reporting by Rafi Schwartz and Paul Blest.