U.S President Donald Trump speaks during the final press conference with French President Emmanuel Macron during the G7 summit Monday, Aug. 26, 2019, in Biarritz, southwestern France. French president says he hopes for meeting between US President Trump and Iranian President Rouhani in coming weeks. (AP Photo/Francois Mori)
On Tuesday night, Real Clear Politics’ Susan Crabtree reported her sources have confirmed that President Trump is firing seven inspectors general “in one fell swoop.” She believes the group will include IGs who were appointed by either President Obama or a previous administration. She wrote that the President “wants his own people in those positions now” and noted that, during his briefing on Tuesday afternoon, he said he had “put in seven names.”
Breaking: Trump is firing 7 IGs in one fail swoop, sources confirm to @RealClearNews. Most likely will be the IGs that were appointed by Pres. Obama or beforehand. He wants his own people in those positions now. Trump during his briefing said he has "put in 7 names" for IGs.
— Susan Crabtree (@susancrabtree) April 7, 2020
Crabtree indicated this group includes Intelligence Community IG Michael Atkinson, who received the whistleblower complaint last August. After the acting DNI, the general counsel of the DNI and the DOJ Office of Legal Counsel determined the complaint was not a matter of “urgent concern,” Atkinson notified members of Congress of the complaint, most significantly Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), which ignited the impeachment inquiry against President Trump. News of Atkinson’s firing broke on Friday.
It may also include the firing of acting IG Glenn Fine which was reported on Tuesday. Fine was appointed to oversee the spending related to the recently passed Coronavirus Stimulus law.
Fine, nominated in 2016 by Obama, had been the acting Defense Department IG since 2016, until his appointment to lead the committee overseeing the stimulus spending. According to the Wall Street Journal, Fine “had planned on continuing his duties at the Pentagon while chairing the coronavirus oversight committee. Instead, Mr. Trump has returned him to his position as principal deputy inspector general. Only inspectors general or acting inspectors general can chair the Pandemic Response Accountability Committee.”
None of this was entirely unexpected. Following his acquittal by the Senate, President Trump has taken aim at many Obama holdovers throughout the government.
National Security Advisor Robert O’Brien has already done some house cleaning within the National Security Council.
In late February, after acting DNI Joseph Maguire tasked a member of his staff to brief the House Intelligence Committee that the Russians were meddling in the 2020 election to re-elect Trump, he was out. U.S. Ambassador to Germany Richard Grenell was chosen to take over as acting Director until a permanent replacement is named.
Grenell has been a loyal ally to the President. They are like-minded and are said to share similar worldviews. At the time, The Federalist’s Ben Weingarten wrote that, in his role as the U.S. Ambassador to Germany, “Grenell has been an outspoken and passionate advocate for the president’s policies,” and has been “singularly focused on achieving the administration’s objectives.”
At the end of February, President Trump nominated Rep. John Ratcliffe (R-TX) to fill the permanent DNI position, actually for the second time.
Is it wrong for a President to surround himself with those who agree with his agenda? I think it’s smart.
Last month, Crabtree reported that “Putting inspectors general, or IGs, under the microscope is the latest push in Trump’s post-impeachment purge of government officials whom the president and his conservative supporters say have worked to undermine his agenda and sabotage political appointees’ efforts to carry it out, several sources familiar with the discussions have told RealClearPolitics.”
Well, haven’t they? It can’t be denied that deep state bureaucrats have been working against President Trump since his November 2016 victory. In addition to running the country, the President and his allies have been forced to devote inestimable time and resources toward managing the steady stream of deep state plots to remove him from office.
Last month, a former White House official told RCP, “The federal bureaucracy has gone to war with the Trump administration, and their people have targeted and taken out many Trump’s officials. Those who are naturally responsible are the IGs, and they are complicit in their inaction.”
Crabtree wrote in a subsequent tweet that last Friday, Trump nominated Brian Miller, who is currently serving as senior White House associate counsel, as Special Inspector General for pandemic recovery at the Treasury Department.
Additionally, she indicated that at least several of those who will be replaced were “acting” IG’s meaning that they had not been confirmed by the Senate.
At best, IG reports are both exposés and cover-ups at the same time. The typical IG is a vehicle for anti-conservative and anti-reform Deep Staters to target enemies. @RealDonaldTrump is right to clean house. https://t.co/rDbuBhThcz
— Tom Fitton (@TomFitton) April 8, 2020
President Reagan fired all of his inspector generals shortly after taking office. The New York Times reported:
On Inauguration Day, Mr. Reagan sent notice to Congress that he had removed 13 inspectors general and two acting inspectors general in 15 agencies.
He said that the discovery of fraud, waste and mismanagement of Federal funds was an ”important priority” of his Administration and that it was essential for him to have the ”fullest confidence” in the ability and integrity of each inspector general.
Rep. Frank Horton (R-NY), the ranking Republican on the House Government Operations Committee, “said in an interview last week that Mr. Reagan had ”made a mistake” in dismissing all the inspectors general.
White House officials ”did not bother to consult with us” before removing them, Mr. Horton said, adding: ”I told the President I was concerned about politicizing the office, and Reagan said, ‘No, no, no, that was not intended at all.’ ”
Of course not!