Donald Trump dismisses Inspector General, parliamentary inquiry launched

Elected Democrats launched a parliamentary investigation on Saturday after the dismissal by the American president of Steve Linick, an inspector general of the State Department who was carrying out an internal investigation on the head of diplomacy, Mike Pompeo.

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Democratic congressmen elected to the United States launched a parliamentary investigation on Saturday, May 16, into the dismissal by President Donald Trump of a State Department inspector who was conducting an internal investigation into the head of diplomacy, Mike Pompeo.

The investigation into the dismissal of Steve Linick was announced by Eliot Engel, chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the House of Representatives, and a Senate Democrat, Bob Menendez.

“We absolutely challenge the dismissals of inspectors general for political reasons,” they said in a statement.

They say Steve Linick was investigating complaints about Mike Pompeo. According to these complaints, the head of diplomacy abused the services of a senior official to carry out personal tasks for him and his wife.

“An act of illegal reprisal”

Mike Pompeo frequently travels around the world on government aircraft with his wife, Susan Pompeo, which makes him cringe because she has no official role. A year ago, CNN reported that a whistleblower complained that diplomatic security was responsible for tasks like taking care of the family dog ​​or shopping for food.

“The fact that Steve Linick was removed from office in the midst of such an investigation strongly suggests that this is an act of unlawful reprisal,” said the chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee. representatives.

The two elected Democrats demand that senior government officials keep all the documents relating to this dismissal and that they transmit them to the commissions in charge of the investigation by May 22.

According to CNN, Mike Pompeo himself advocated the dismissal of Steve Linick and personally chose his replacement, Stephen Akard, a former collaborator of vice president Mike Pence.

However, according to American law, the executive must notify Congress 30 days in advance of its intention to dismiss an inspector general, in order to give parliamentarians time to contest it.

Speaker of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi said Steve Linick had been “punished for honorably fulfilling his duty to protect the Constitution and our national security”.

“The president must break from this habit of retaliation and revenge against officials who work in the service of American security, especially in these times of global emergency,” she added.

Appointed in 2013 by Obama

Since his acquittal in his impeachment of Congress last January, Donald Trump has frequently attacked what he calls “the deep state” to criticize federal officials who he says are hampering his actions.

He transferred or dismissed inspectors general for the Pentagon, intelligence and the Department of Health as well as a senior scientific official, Rick Bright, who ran until the end of April a vaccine agency (BARDA). The latter claims to have been dismissed because of his opposition to the wide use of hydroxychloroquine, a drug once touted by Donald Trump but without rigorously proven effectiveness.

The inspectors general have independent internal investigation powers within each ministry.

Longtime attorney Steve Linick was appointed in 2013 by Barack Obama to oversee the $ 70 billion in US diplomacy.

As for Mike Pompeo, 56, he is a very close collaborator of Donald Trump and one of the few who manages to avoid any visible divergence with an impulsive and unpredictable president.

He took office on April 26, 2018 to succeed Rex Tillerson, who had stormy relations with the American president. theory that the Covid-19 pandemic started in a Chinese laboratory.

Steve Linick played a minor role last year in the drama of the impeachment procedure against Donald Trump by handing over to Congress documents from President’s lawyer Rudy Giuliani.

With AFP

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