When I quipped that the story of Scott Pruitt's luxurious travel schedule was going to end with "some weird sex thing," this is not necessarily what I had in mind.
It was previously reported that Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) administrator Scott Pruitt dined with the president of the Federalist Society while on his taxpayer-funded trip to Italy, but documents obtained by the New York Times show that they were joined by another party.
Pruitt and his staff have tried to cover it up by omitting his name from Pruitt's travel record, but emails show his staff did advance work to meet with Cardinal George Pell who was under investigation for child sexual abuse.
According to an email the Times obtained under a Freedom of Information Act request, planning for the dinner started in May 2017, when aides learned after vetting that Cardinal George Pell was being investigated for sexual abuse. A private tour of the Vatican with the Cardinal was apparently also planned, though it never happened.
Additionally, the restaurant that the men dined at during the June 2017 trip, La Terrazza, reportedly costs hundreds of dollars per plate, a meal that Pruitt had as part of an official EPA trip. It is also unclear what official business Pruitt had with Pell, who is reportedly a climate change skeptic.
Pruitt and his staff knew about the investigation of Cardinal Pell, but he decided to dine with him at an expensive, 5-star restaurant anyway.
Based on the information we have and what we know about Pruitt, it appears that being a climate change denier is far more important to Pruitt than not being a child abuser.
But who knows? Maybe we have this backwards. Maybe Pruitt wasn't interested in Cardinal Pell's thoughts on climate change.
Scott Pruitt is a bizarre, suspicious person who shouldn't be anywhere near levers of power or privilege and, if he was willing to overlook or ignore the accusations against Cardinal Pell, you probably shouldn't let your children go near him.
Cardinel Pell was charged in court earlier this month for multiple counts of abuse.