Steve Linick: Democrats probe Trump's firing of inspector general

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The missive also criticizes the timing of Trump's "late-night firing" and contextualizes the personnel change as "only [Trump's] latest sacking" in line with a recent firing spree aimed at the largely politically-neutral watchdog and good government framework.

The removals of the inspectors general - and their replacement with allies of the president - are part of an aggressive strategy by Trump and his top aides to move against what he considers to be "deep state" officials throughout numerous key agencies who he believes are opposed to his agenda.

A screenshot of the latest tweet posted by Nancy Pelosi, Speaker of the US House of Representatives, to accuse the firing of Steve Linick.

"The President's late-night, weekend firing of the State Department Inspector General has accelerated his risky pattern of retaliation against the patriotic public servants charged with conducting oversight on behalf of the American people", wrote Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi of California in a statement issued Friday night. A White House official told NBC News that Pompeo had "recommended" that Linick be removed, and President Donald Trump approved the request.

Although it is speculated that Linick had issued several reports regarding the staff appointed by the Trump administration in the ministry, he has been removed from the post only.

Linick is the third inspector general Trump has fired since April, under the cover of the coronavirus epidemic, and the third to have exerted oversight that would've challenged and put a check on Trump's power.

'The president has the right to fire any federal employee, but the fact is if it looks like it's in retaliation for something the IG, the inspector general, was investigating, that could be unlawful, ' Pelosi said on CNN's State of the Union.

She said that President Trump had not "provided the kind of justification for the removal of IG Linick required" by the law of the The Inspector General Reform Act.

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Mr Engel did not provide any further details about the content of this investigation into Mr Pompeo.

Bulatao claimed that Linick had declined to refer a leak investigation to the Council of Inspectors General on Integrity and Efficiency, so that another agency's watchdog could investigate.

Linick, a longtime prosecutor, was appointed in 2013 by Trump's predecessor Barack Obama to oversee the $70 billion juggernaut of USA diplomacy.

Pelosi said Linick's removal accelerated Trump's "dangerous pattern of retaliation against the patriotic public servants charged with conducting oversight on behalf of the American people".

State Department Inspector General Steve Linick "was investigating - at my request - Trump's phony declaration of an emergency so he could send weapons to Saudi Arabia", according to Engel, a Democrat.

In the meantime, Ambassador Stephen Akard will serve in the role, the State Department said. Navarro's comments can potentially escalate the tensions between the Democrats who have raised concerns that Trump was supposedly firing watchdogs whom he thinks may pose as a threat to his presidency.

Mr Pompeo is one of Mr Trump's most trusted aides, and a rare one never to come publicly into the crosshairs of the mercurial president.

Atkinson first alerted Congress to a whistleblower complaint that led to Trump's impeachment trial.

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