Trump Considered Firing Intel Community Inspector General: Report
President Trump has contemplated firing the intelligence community inspector general for reporting the Ukraine whistleblower’s complaint to Congress after deeming it credible, according to The New York Times.
Michael Atkinson, a Trump appointee, notified House Intelligence Chairman Adam Schiff (D-CA) on September 9 of an “urgent concern” brought to his attention: the complaint, filed Aug. 12, by a CIA analyst. It was after its release to the public on September 26 that Trump first expressed his displeasure with Atkinson’s decision, the Times reported, citing four people familiar with the discussions.
NEW: Trump has discussed firing the inspector general for the intelligence community, Michael Atkinson. The president believes Atkinson was disloyal when he deemed the whistleblower’s complaint credible and reported it to Congress. #déjàvu? w/@maggieNYT https://t.co/gNnYpZ1JWe
— Michael S. Schmidt (@nytmike) November 12, 2019
In recent weeks, Trump has apparently continued to raise the possibility of firing Atkinson, whom he believes is disloyal.
The president has the authority to remove the inspector general, according to US code, but Congress must be notified 30 days in advance.
This is not the first time Trump has at least considered firing an individual whom he has deemed responsible for putting him in political danger. According to the report compiled by Robert Mueller, the special counsel tasked with conducting the investigation into Russia’s ties to the Trump campaign, Trump directed White House Counsel Don McGahn to tell Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein to fire Mueller.