Trump fires watchdog who raised alarm about whistleblower

U.S. President Donald Trump leaves for Florida at the South Lawn of the White House in Washington D.C., the United States, on Jan. 23, 2020. U.S. President Donald Trump will discuss regional and security issues with Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu here next week, the White House said on Thursday. (Xinhua/Liu Jie)
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By Erik Wasson Bloomberg News (TNS)

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump has fired the Intelligence Community inspector general who raised alarm over a whistleblower’s complaint that led eventually to Trump’s impeachment.

Michael Atkinson alerted Congress about the complaint regarding Trump’s demand that Ukraine investigate former Vice President Joe Biden and his son.

Atkinson would be removed in 30 days, according to a letter to Congress. The White House did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Congressional Democrats expressed outrage late Friday night.

House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff assailed the move in a statement late Friday night. “President Trump’s decision to fire Intelligence Community Inspector General Michael Atkinson is yet another blatant attempt by the President to gut the independence of the Intelligence Community and retaliate against those who dare to expose presidential wrongdoing.”

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer of New York said in a statement that Atkinson “is a man of integrity who has served our nation for almost two decades. Being fired for having the courage to speak truth to power makes him a patriot.”

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