Trump fired the intelligence community lawyer who told Congress about the Ukraine whistleblower complaint
President Donald Trump removed the intelligence community inspector general Michael Atkinson on Friday evening, and his dismissal will be effective in 30 days, CNN reported.
Atkinson made headlines last year when it surfaced that he alerted Congress about a whistleblower's complaint that accused the president of soliciting foreign election interference.
In a letter to the chairman and ranking member of the Senate Intelligence Committee, Trump said he no longer had the "fullest confidence" in Atkinson.
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The US intelligence official who opposed efforts to conceal a whistleblower's complaint about President Donald Trump's dealings with Ukraine will be out of a job in 30 days. The firing was announced in a letter from the White House to the US Senate's Select Committee on Intelligence, as reported by Politico.
On August 26, 2019 , Michael Atkinson, the Intelligence Community Inspector General, submitted the whistleblower's complaint to acting Director of Intelligence Joseph Maguire.
Atkinson, who had reviewed the material — regarding Trump's efforts to tie US military aid approved by Congress to a Ukrainian announcement of an investigation into his chief political rival, former Vice President Joe Biden — had deemed the matter an "urgent concern." But Maguire, who was legally obligated to pass the complaint on to Congress within a week, did not do so.
On September 9, 2019, Atkinson informed Congress himself.
Tweet Embed: //twitter.com/mims/statuses/1246261544062726144?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw SCOOP: Trump has fired Michael Atkinson, the inspector general for the intelligence community, who opposed then-DNI Maguire's decision to withhold the whistleblower complaint that sparked the impeachment inquiry. Letter to Burr/Warner, obtained by me & @NatashaBertrand pic.twitter.com/hBwlR0HCZY
In his April 3 letter, President Trump did not give specify why, exactly, he was firing Atkinson. Instead, he stressed his right to do so, writing that "it is vital that I have the fullest confidence in the appointees serving as Inspectors General. This is no longer the case with regard to this Inspector General."
Atkinson, who began working at the US Department of Justice under President George W. Bush, will formally be out of the job in 30 days. Trump said that, at a later date, he will nominate a replacement "who has my full confidence."
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