The termination of Michael Atkinson, Inspector General of the Intelligence Community, will harm the government’s ability to conduct oversight and accountability, says whistleblower attorney Stephen M. Kohn.
In a recent opinion piece published by The Hill, Kohn argued that this news would call into question the “ability of the government to respond honestly, ethically, and effectively to the coronavirus pandemic.”
From The Hill:
The question raised by the termination of Atkinson is not whether President Trump had the power to initiate the 30-day removal process and fire the inspector. His animus toward the Atkinson and the whistleblower he protected is well documented. The real question is whether Congress will use the mandatory 30-day review process to defend the inspector general program. At issue is the ability of Congress and the American people to be fully informed of abuses within their government. It is clear that President Trump wants to shut down the IG process whenever investigations may prove embarrassing to him or his appointees. It is not clear what Congress is willing to do about this.