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Brief biography of Attorney General Scott Pruitt
Scott Pruitt was elected the Attorney General of Oklahoma in November 2010. As attorney general, he is dedicated to fighting corruption, safeguarding Oklahoma’s vulnerable citizens, championing public safety measures to reduce violent crime and and protecting the interests of the State of Oklahoma and its citizens. Pruitt established Oklahoma’s first federalism unit in the Office of Solicitor General to combat unwarranted regulation and overreach by the federal government. He is a national leader in the cause to restore the proper balance of power between the states and federal government, having served two terms as president of the Republican Attorneys General Association. Pruitt filed the first lawsuit challenging the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, is a leading advocate against the EPA’s activist agenda, and is leading a multistate lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of the Dodd-Frank financial law. Before being elected attorney general, he served eight years in the Oklahoma State Senate where he was a leading voice for fiscal responsibility, religious freedom and pro-life issues. Pruitt and his wife, Marlyn, have been married 24 years and have two children, McKenna and Cade.
Full biography of Attorney General Scott Pruitt
Attorney General E. Scott Pruitt was elected as the 17th Attorney General of the State of Oklahoma on November 2, 2010. He is the second Republican in the history of the state to hold the office, which oversees 80 attorneys. He is dedicated to fighting corruption, protecting Oklahoma’s vulnerable citizens, championing public safety measures to reduce violent crime and advocating excellence in the administration of the law, justice and protecting the interests of the Great State of Oklahoma and its citizens.
Pruitt is a national leader in the cause of restoring limited government and the proper balance of power between the states and the federal government. As a first priority in office, Pruitt established Oklahoma’s first federalism unit in the Office of Solicitor General to more effectively combat unwarranted regulation and systematic overreach by federal agencies, boards and offices.
Pruitt served two terms as chairman of the Republican Attorneys General Association (RAGA) and one term as chairman of the Midwest Region of the National Association of Attorneys General (NAAG). Under his leadership, attorneys general have come together to advance policies and legal strategies that protect the interests of their states from an overly intrusive federal government, with a particular focus on domestic energy security and production. Pruitt has led the charge with repeated notices and subsequent lawsuits against the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for their leadership’s activist agenda and refusal to follow the law.
Pruitt is an ardent defender of Oklahoma consumers, families and children in his capacity as Oklahoma’s top law officer. During his first months in office, he transformed the AG’s consumer protection efforts into the Public Protection Unit with a broader focus on keeping citizens safe. He established the Internet Crimes Against Children Unit to provide specific training for investigators and expanded resources for tracking criminals who intend to exploit children through technology.
In response to a personal call to defend the needs of children who are less fortunate, Pruitt worked to negotiate a state settlement through the Department of Human Services that will dramatically improve foster care in Oklahoma. He was awarded the “Hero Award” by the Marland Children’s Home for his efforts to prevent closure of the home and eviction of children who are emotionally disabled. In 2011, Pruitt received the Humanitarian Award by Oklahoma CARE, a coalition of ministries and providers who deliver care for troubled children and their families.
Establishing and respecting the rule of law is a hallmark of Pruitt’s administration. In late 2011, Pruitt made national headlines when he took the bold step of negotiating an Oklahoma settlement with mortgage servicers instead of joining a 49-state mortgage settlement that exceeded the proper legal role and scope of authority vested in state attorneys general. The Oklahoma agreement with several of the nation’s largest mortgage service providers included $18.6 million in compensatory damages for Oklahomans who were harmed by unfair practices during the foreclosure process.
Before being elected attorney general, Pruitt served Broken Arrow, Coweta and Tulsa in the Oklahoma State Senate where he served for eight years, four of those as assistant Republican floor leader. In the Senate, he was the leading spokesman for workers’ compensation reform, lawsuit reform and greater accountability for government spending. He championed traditional, faith-based legislation that included allowing faith-based organizations to partner with the state in helping prisoners successfully re-integrate into society after their sentences were fulfilled.
Pruitt used his experience in the Legislature to transform the AG’s Workers’ Compensation, Insurance and Social Security Fraud Unit and the Medicaid Fraud Control Unit. Under his leadership, the fraud units increased prosecutions, hired 12 investigators, secured more than $20 million in Medicaid fraud restitution and worked directly with Oklahoma businesses to educate workers on fraud recognition and reporting.
Pruitt’s record of defending religious freedoms began during his time in the state Legislature with his efforts to author and successfully pass the Religious Freedoms Act, making Oklahoma one of the first states to pass an act that makes it more difficult for a government to burden an individual's right to practice their faith, especially in public. His efforts continue as attorney general, joining six states to fight the federal health care mandate that will require religious groups to violate their beliefs. In 2012, Pruitt was selected to serve as a trustee for The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.
From 2003 to 2010, Pruitt was co-owner and managing general partner of the Oklahoma City Redhawks, the Triple-A baseball team in Oklahoma City. The team, under his leadership, regularly rated among the league’s leaders in attendance and merchandise sales.
Pruitt grew up in Lexington, Kentucky, where he graduated high school and earned a scholarship to play baseball as a second baseman at the University of Kentucky. He earned a bachelor’s degree in communications and political science at Georgetown College before being accepted to the University of Tulsa College of Law. After working his way through law school and earning a Juris Doctorate, Pruitt ventured into private practice, specializing in constitutional and employment law.
The Attorney General and his wife of 24 years, Marlyn, are raising two children, McKenna and Cade, in Tulsa. The Pruitts are members of the First Baptist Church of Broken Arrow, where Pruitt serves as deacon.