Senate Republicans suspend rules to approve Trump's EPA chief pick over Democrats' boycott
Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt testifies before a Senate Environment and Public Works Committee confirmation hearing on his nomination to be administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency in Washington, U.S., January 18, 2017. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts

A Senate committee suspended rules on Thursday to approve President Donald Trump's controversial choice to lead the Environmental Protection Agency on Thursday amid a boycott of his nomination by the panel's Democratic members.

Wyoming Senator John Barrasso, chair of the environment and public works committee, said the committee would "suspend several rules" temporarily to approve the nomination of Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt as EPA administrator.

The panel's Democrats boycotted Wednesday's meeting to approve Pruitt, saying that the nominee doubts the science of climate change and had too many conflicts of interest with the companies he is charged with regulating.

(Reporting By Valerie Volcovici)