Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s lavish taxpayer-funded dinners and personal errands using government resources as well as an “emergency” Saudi arms deal that circumvented Congressional review are reportedly part of a growing list of misconduct that Inspector General Steve Linick was investigating before Trump announced his intent to fire Linick. If Trump is retaliating against IGs who challenge corruption and abuse of taxpayer dollars, then the public needs to know the extent he is willing to go to eliminate those threats.
CREW has requested State Department documents on Linick’s removal, the Saudi Arabia arms deal, and the Madison Dinners—a series of lavish dinners with questionable political purposes organized by his wife through her private email and funded by taxpayers.
This comes amidst a flurry of other attacks against Inspectors General. Friday also saw the replacement of the Department of Transportation Acting IG with a political appointee as well as a nomination of a permanent DOT IG from the Justice Department. Additionally, Trump recently removed the Intelligence Community IG, the Health and Human Services Acting IG, and the Department of Defense Acting IG thus also removing him from the chairmanship of the Pandemic Response Accountability Committee, forced the Environmental Protection Agency IG to split his time between two agencies, and continues to leave other agencies without permanent IGs for months or years. Trump’s chilling attacks on accountability mean that the public needs the requested documents to understand if there was improper retaliatory conduct by Trump, and to what extent other high-level officials are complicit in his schemes.