In autocracies people vanish in the dead of night. At least Donald Trump can only victimize Intelligence Community Inspector General Michael Atkinson, who received the whistle blower complaint and acted upon it according to the law. That miffed Trump then and obviously he stayed miffed. So off with Atkinson’s head, Trump fired him. New York Times:
“As is the case with regard to other positions where I, as president, have the power of appointment, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, it is vital that I have the fullest confidence in the appointees serving as inspectors general,” Mr. Trump wrote. “That is no longer the case with regard to this inspector general.”
“The inspector general may be removed from office only by the president,” the law states. “The president shall communicate in writing to the congressional intelligence committees the reasons for the removal not later than 30 days prior to the effective date of such removal.”
Mr. Trump also wrote that he will later submit a nominee who “has my full confidence and who meets the appropriate qualifications.”
The pundits are going to chime in with opinions on what this is all about. One thing to consider is that Trump is feeling more impotent than usual lately over COVID-19 and so he had to do something powerful, like take down an enemy. That is about as deep or thoughtful as his actions get. We really are dealing with a lunatic and wanna be dictator. My God. What did the Senate do by keeping this guy in power?