GOP Sen. Grassley Says He’s Introducing Bill to Protect IGs After Recent Trump Admin Firings
Senator Chuck Grassley (R- IA) recently expressed his dissatisfaction with the lack of rationale given by President Donald Trump for firing the inspectors general at the State Department and intelligence community.
Grassley wrote to the president that he wants “detailed” explanations for why Steve Linick and Michael Atkinson were fired.
Now Grassley writes in a Washington Post op-ed that he’s introducing a bill that would further strengthen protections for IGs given these recent firings.
He chides not just Trump but also his predecessor Barack Obama for offering “dubious rationales for firing the watchdogs”:
In the end, both presidents provided some dubious rationales for firing the watchdogs, and in both cases the outcome remained unchanged. That’s because the Constitution clearly gives the president sole authority to manage executive branch staff. The 2008 law sought to deter IG removals for reasons beyond their own failure to effectively oversee their agencies.
Now, two consecutive administrations from both political parties have proven that the law isn’t working as intended. Despite a clear congressional record to the contrary, a court even ruled in the Walpin case (which the Trump administration recently cited in a letter to me) that the law doesn’t require greater detail beyond its “minimal statutory mandate” to justify a removal.
“It’s really this simple: If inspectors general are doing good work, they should stay; if not, they should go. If the president is going to remove an inspector general, there’d better be a good reason,” he adds.
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