April 21, 2018
By Eric Lipton –
Scott Pruitt, the head of the Environmental Protection Agency, met personally last year with J. Steven Hart, the lobbyist whose wife had rented him a $50-a-night Capitol Hill condo, a disclosure that contradicts earlier statements that E.P.A. lobbying by Mr. Hart had not occurred.
The meeting was set up on behalf of an executive associated with Smithfield Foods, the world’s largest pork processor and hog producer. Previously, Mr. Hart and his lobbying firm, Williams & Jensen, had maintained that Mr. Hart never lobbied Mr. Pruitt in 2017, when Mr. Pruitt was living in a condo co-owned by Mr. Hart’s wife, or in the time since then.
Late Friday, Williams & Jensen revealed in a filing that Mr. Hart was a registered lobbyist for Smithfield Foods in the first quarter of 2018 and said that he lobbied the E.P.A. on the company’s behalf. Details on the filing were first reported by The Hill.