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LA City Council Voices Opposition To Trump's EPA Pick

LOS ANGELES ( — The Los Angeles City Council went on record Tuesday opposing Scott Pruitt's nomination to head the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

A second resolution was also introduced by six council members, opposing 11 other nominees of President Donald Trump.

The passed resolution, which was introduced by Councilman Paul Koretzand adopted on a 13-0 vote, says Pruitt's appointment "would impact the health and welfare of the American people and the environment.''

The newly introduced resolution, was co-presented by Koretz, opposes many of Trump's Cabinet nominees, including Rick Perry to head the Department of Energy, Ben Carson to run the Department of Housing and Urban Development, Betsy DeVos to oversee the Department of Education, Rex Tillerson to head the State Department and Jeff Sessions to lead the Department of Justice.

Reasons are given for the opposition to each nominee in the motion.

For example, the opposition to Tillerson said the former CEO of ExxonMobil's appointment would "impact foreign relations negatively,'' among other reasons.

The new resolution also opposes Elaine Chao to head the Department of Transportation, Tom Price to head the Department of Health and Human Services, Wilbur Ross to head the Department of Commerce, Andrew Puzder to head the Department of Labor, Ryan Zinke to head the Department of the Interior and Sonny Perdue to head the Department of Agriculture.

The resolution was co-introduced by council members David Ryu, Gil Cedillo, Curren Price, Mitch O'Farrell and Jose Huizar, and seconded by Councilman Mike Bonin.

Trump's nominee to head up the EPA has close ties to the energy industry, has sued the EPA in the past, and, at his Senate confirmation hearing, said the level of human impact on climate change is "subject to debate and dialogue,'' all of which are pointed out in the approved resolution.

"The American people are tired of seeing billions of dollars drained from our economy due to unnecessary EPA regulations, and I intend to run this agency in a way that fosters both responsible protection of the environment and freedom for American businesses,'' the attorney general of Oklahoma said when he was nominated in December.

The resolution says Pruitt would not commit to keeping in place the current version of the decades-old federal waiver that allows California to set emissions standards stricter than elsewhere in the U.S.

"Attorney General Scott Pruitt of Oklahoma has built his career suing the agency he would oversee,'' Koretz said. "Instead of protecting our health and environment, he wants to reduce the protections on our air and water and challenge the idea of federal action to control pollution.''

Opposing some of Trump's nominees is the latest maneuver by a council that is finding itself increasingly at odds with the new president.

Trump's moves to increase deportations and build a wall between Mexico and the United States were strongly denounced by several council members, and some have been drafting motions intended to fight the president's immigration policies.

The council has also approved the city's $2 million donation to a legal defense fund intended to help immigrants facing deportation.

Over the weekend, at least two council members -- Jose Huizar and Mike Bonin -- joined protests at Los Angeles International Airport opposing Trump's ban on immigration from seven predominantly Muslim countries.

(©2017 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)


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