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Scott Pruitt explains why he delays release of his schedules

Pruitt on publicly releasing his schedule
Scott Pruitt on why he won't release his schedule publicly 00:55

Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt says he prizes transparency when it comes to agency oversight -- even though it took months of public pressure for his office to make his daily calendars public. 

"There's a security component to it," Pruitt said in a new interview with CBS News chief White House correspondent Major Garrett on "The Takeout" podcast this week.

Listen to this episode on Stitcher

Last fall, the agency began releasing Pruitt's public schedule after mounting pressure and Freedom of Information Act requests by journalists and advocacy groups alike for lists of the daily items on his schedule. 

Now, the EPA releases his schedules -- but on a delay -- approximately two weeks after the events take place. 

Beyond security precautions, Pruitt said he's unaware of any other reasons for the retroactive release.

"I don't know," he said. "I'm not involved in that as far as the timing of that."

Garrett pressed Pruitt on the fact that releasing schedules is generally standard practice for Cabinet members, as well as previous administrators of his own agency. 

"I wish it weren't this way," Pruitt said of schedule-release delays he blamed on "unprecedented" threats to his security. "Look, we live in a highly charged environment -- political and otherwise. It's toxic in many ways around a host of issues, particularly when you deal with issues of passion like the environment."

For more of Major's conversation with Pruitt, including why he believes humans are responsible for the changing climate, download "The Takeout" podcast on Apple PodcastsGoogle PlayStitcher, or Spotify. New episodes are available every Friday morning.

Also, you can watch "The Takeout" on CBSN Friday and Saturday nights at 9pm ET/PT. For a full archive of "The Takeout" episodes, visit And you can listen to "The Takeout" on select CBS News Radio affiliates (check your local listings).

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Producers: Arden Farhi, Katiana Krawchenko

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