As a campaign promise, Scott Pruitt committed to calling for the audit. That was in 2010. The audit was requested & completed in 2011. Pruitt made the very odd and unexplained act of sealing the completed audit. Even through his 2014 re-election, the audit remained sealed. In 2016, Gary Jones conducted the recurring audit of the AG's office. Pruitt refused to be audited, but Jones made the conflict an open political drama. Pruitt realized he had no legal standing and decided he could not bully Jones away. Political insiders suspect that the same corruptions of campaign contributions which may have influenced Edmondson to block and audit, may have influenced Pruitt to seal the audit. We are still researching this matter.
The Tar Creek audit has no doubt caused a deep strain in the relationship between AG Pruitt & Auditor Jones. If the Federal EPA was to bring in a federal investigation, any corruption & coverup could send state officials to federal prison. But if Pruitt runs the EPA, then there is no chance of a federal investigation, right?
Jones has long wanted his Tar Creek audit released. Yet Pruitt and his hand-picked successor, Mike Hunter; call Jones' audit 'shoddy and unreliable'. That claim is completely without merit. Why would Jones what his worst work to go public while he's running for governor? Why would Hunter want to hide the very evidence to back up his defamation of Jones to be keep secret?
Statute of Limitations..
The lawsuit which pressured the release of the audit was filed several months ago. Hunter stalled and stalled while Jones (technically a defendant in the legal action), openly assisted the plaintiffs. Jones seemed very confident that the audit would vindicate him and discredit both Pruitt & Hunter.
Suddenly, on April 9th, 2018, Hunter released the full audit. It was clear that high irregularities were present and that a grand jury action was called for. Yet Pruitt did nothing to execute justice. Pruitt (and only Pruitt) knew the full facts of the audit. The public could not know of any suspected corruption in the cleanup fund agency or the contractor.
The contract which drew the most scorn was accepted by the cleanup fund state agency on April 8th, 2011.
That's right! Seven years and one day after the highly suspicious deal was done. More importantly, one day after the statutory limitation on criminal prosecution. Pruitt & Hunter were the only ones allowed to know the truth until one day after the statute of limitations; when the people of Oklahoma could have circulated a petition to call their own grand jury to bring this to justice without any help from those who were supposed to be above corruption.
Pruitt and his hand-picked successor claimed that they didn't reveal the audit because it would harm the private reputations of citizens whom he decided not to prosecute. How many of us enjoy that same concern for reputation when we face justice?
We want to commend the great research of Justin Wingerter of the Oklahoman for his crack research efforts.
Opinion of the Editor
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David Van Risseghem is the Director of Sooner Politics.org. The resource is committed to informing & mobilizing conservative Oklahomans for civic reform. This endeavor seeks to utilize the efforts of all cooperative facets of the Conservative movement...