Democrats grill Pompeo out of state IG

At the hearing, state undertaker Brian Bulatao for management determined several areas where he failed Linick in his job, including that he failed to complete a legally required audit on time, That fewer inspections were initiated under Linnick and fewer inquiries closed, that internal surveys showed low morale in the Office of the Inspector General.

Bulato also alleged that Linic may be responsible for leaking a draft inspector general report to the press. A spokesperson for Linnick did not immediately offer comment on Bulutao’s allegations, but Linnick has noted in the past that an outside investigation found that no inspector general’s report was leaked to anyone in his office.

The panel’s Democrats rejected Bultao’s explanation, alleging Pompeo’s dismissal of Linnec because of the investigation, that he had opened to the use of secretary of taxpayer dollars and that Pompeo declared a state of emergency, which led him to Saudi Arabia Congress got approval to sell arms.

Congress Democrats are investigating why Pompeo fired Linnick, who had served as Inspector General of the State Department since 2013. It took several months for housing committees and Pompeo’s partners to agree on a hearing schedule, with a lot of legal wrangling and harsh publicity. Exchanges on the way.

Pompeo asked President Donald Trump to fire Linnick, and the president did so in mid-May. Linnick became one of several inspectors who were sidelined by the general president. Democrats criticized the move, saying that Trump is trying to avoid accountability.

The inspector general is to act as an independent watchman who roots for recklessness, fraud and abuse in federal agencies. It is rare for the president to shoot an inspector general, and Linnick has said that he was pushed out.

After Knight Linnick was fired, Engel revealed that the Inspector General had investigated whether Pompeo and his wife Susan were improperly using taxpayer resources. Allegations including asking employees to run personal work for them.

Linic was also looking at whether Pompeo acted properly in using the Emergency Declaration to approve the sale of arms to Saudi Arabia over the objections of members of Congress.

The Inspector General’s report on that case found Pompeo acted within his legal authority, but it raised questions about the timing of the emergency declaration and found that the State Department fully acknowledged the risk of civilian casualties in places such as Yemen. No arms sales when it was approved.

Two other Pompeo assistants in the state, legal adviser Maric String and assistant secretary of state for political-military affairs R. Clarke Cooper, both defending Pompeo’s emergency certification that the sale of weapons was green-lit, resulting in Iran posing a serious threat to the region. . String also noted that the language to fire Linnick was similar to the language used during the Obama administration to fire general inspectors. Aides also insisted that Pompeo was unaware Linic had examined him and his wife.

In a controversial exchange, Rep. Brad Sherman (D-California) wondered why a delayed annual audit was considered an unforgivable crime when he claimed that the state was “chronologically late” in making other reports, including life and death. Is critically required for policy matters of. . “Sherman also rejected Bulto’s claim that low morale was isolated in the Office of the Inspector General.

“If you had any integrity, you would also call for the resignation of Secretary Pompeo,” Sherman told Bulato.

“We all know in this room how morale is in their State Department,” he said. “If low morale is the reason for someone being fired, then look up, not down.”

Meanwhile, the Republicans defended the decision to shoot Linnick, pointing to the reasons mentioned by Bulato.

In his opening remarks, the committee’s ranking Republican, Texas Reps. Michael McCall said he hoped after Wednesday’s hearing that the panel could “put the matter behind us.”

Rape Scott Perry (R-Pa.) Said that in light of what Bulato had said, “substantial and many” failures by Linnick, the former Inspector General’s defense of Democrats “runs contrary to our duty to maintain public confidence” . ”

Pompeo denied knowing that Linnick was investigating him and his wife, and rejected any claims of wrongdoing. Linnick has told MPs that he informed some of Pompeo’s top aides about the investigation.

In the lawmakers’ letter since Linnick’s firing, Pompeo’s top aide, including Deputy Secretary of State Steve Begun, has insisted that he was told about the investigation of the secretary and his wife, none of them Pompeo.

Since Linnick’s dismissal, other disappointments have arisen with Pompeios, although it is unclear whether the Office of the Inspector General is weighing him as it continues to investigate the actions of the secretary and his wife.

NBC News revealed that Pompeo is hosting fancy, taxpayer-funded dinners primarily for prominent people with no connection to diplomacy. The so-called Madison Dinner has upset State Department staffers, who suspect it is their aim to build Pompeo’s support and donor base for the future of political office.

There are also questions about how Pompeios managed to get permission to rent a house at the US military base and whether it was appropriate to take Susan Pompeo on a trip to the Middle East during the US government shutdown.