Pruitt joked about the reception, saying signs greeting him "didn't say 'I hope you're having fun.'" He said messages instead implored him to support ethanol over big oil.
Renew Kansas board member and President/CEO of East Kansas Agri-Energy, Bill Pracht, provided a tour of the facility's ethanol and renewable diesel operations before turning the event over to a lively standing-room-only conversation on the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). Numerous farmers who spoke to Pruitt said that they felt the waiver increase was hurting their farms and their income.
Ingraham called for Pruitt to go this week after it was reported he enlisted an aide and Republican donors to find his wife a job.
Wyoming Senator John Barrasso, chair of the Senate environment committee that has oversight of the EPA, said that he plans to call Pruitt to testify before his panel about his scandals later this year, his spokesman Mike Danylak said.
Citing their shared background and beliefs, Inhofe said he was surprised by the near-constant churn of bruising stories about Pruitt's ethics and personal conduct in office.
Leo is a prominent Pruitt backer and longtime friend who was involved in arrangements for the administrator's visit to Italy past year.
Renew Kansas President and CEO Ron Seeber noted, "Administrator Pruitt learned, without a doubt, that the industry is frustrated".
Pruitt was also under fire this week by a conservative nonprofit group from Iowa, which created a 30-second television ad this week and said "for the good of the country, Pruitt must go". "So that's what we've seen, is a spike in applications".
Pruitt told the group he believes E15 should be available year-round. Pruitt's visit to the farm wasn't publicized and was closed to the public.
"A spike? That's more than a spike".
"I've said there are a lot of things that he has done - I know him very well - some are not characteristic of him at all", Inhofe said.
"We share most of Pruitt's views about environmental policy".
In an interview with The Washington Post, however, Inhofe said he was not calling on Pruitt to resign.
"It's important to hear directly from the community that EPA regulates, and today we heard from farmers and utility workers about the impact of the Agency's work", Pruitt said in a statement. The Waters of the U.S.is a 2015 rule from President Barack Obama's administration that called for the extension of federal regulatory authority over small bodies of water, including dry streams and ditches.