Trump Fires Intelligence Community Inspector General Who Informed Congress Of The Ukraine Whistleblower Complaint

President Donald Trump has fired the CIA Inspector General who was responsible for informing Congress of the whistleblower complaint on the Ukraine scandal. Intelligence Community Inspector General Michael Atkinson will leave his job in 30 days and, in the interim, will be on interim leave. No successor has been named. I previously stated that I believe Atkinson was wrong in his interpretation of the law (as later found by the Justice Department). However, I believe that this is a mistake and undermines the system of whistleblower protections as well as the Inspector General system. Without a specific basis for the action, it appears retaliatory and it is certainly unnecessary. As noted below, there could be a legitimate concern over the interpretation of this law in the future if Atkinson was defying the Justice Department’s conclusions. Yet, that was not cited as the basis for the termination.

I have long resented how administrations often wait until Friday night to bury stories that they do not want to be covered. That was the case with Atkinson’s firing. On Friday night, President Trump informed Congress: “As is the case with regard to other positions where I, as President, have the power of appointment … it is vital that I have the fullest confidence in the appointees serving as inspectors general. That is no longer the case with regard to this Inspector General.”

When Trump removed figures like Alexander Vindman after the impeachment, I thought it was gratuitous and unnecessary (he was leaving within the month). However, I could understand working with Vindman would be difficult. This is different.

Atkinson was wrong in his interpretation of the complaint failing within the statutory scheme for reporting to Congress. While the inspector general concluded that this allegation fell within the whistleblower law, the Justice Department has a good faith basis to reject his interpretation. That law is intended to address mismanagement, waste, abuse or a danger to public safety by intelligence officials. The president is the ultimate intelligence authority, and there is little support to argue that a discussion between world leaders should be viewed as a subject of this law. After all, any intelligence official could claim that a president undermined national interests in discussions with another world leader. Trump has been denounced, perhaps correctly, for disclosing classified information to foreign figures, but he has total authority to declassify information for a good reason, a bad reason, or no reason at all.

I believe that Atkinson should have yielded to the legal judgment of the Justice Department on the interpretation of this law. I further believe that Trump had a legitimate complaint about the use of the law to cover such high-level communications. Yet, this was obviously a matter of good-faith disagreement. I understood the bind that Atkinson felt in deciding whether to report the complaint to Congress. He decided to err on the side of transparency, which is generally a good predisposition for any government official. Moreover, whatever mistake was made on the legal interpretation, it does not warrant this action. Atkinson did what he honestly thought was right for the country and I have seen nothing to suggest a political or vindictive motive.

Moreover, Atkinson’s firing undermines the independence of the Inspector General’s office and its key function in our system. It is also damaging to President Trump. Rather than take the high road and move his Administration beyond the scandal, Trump will appear as vindictive and retaliatory. To take the action in the middle of a pandemic also makes the President look petty and distracted.

What concerns me the most is that there was no reason given for firing Atkinson other than a “loss of confidence.” No one questions the right of a president to fire high-ranking officials on that basis, but it seems to reaffirm that this is being done in retaliation for his decision that he had to inform Congress of the complaint. The position of the White House would be stronger if the Inspector General was asserting that he would continue to report such complaints to Congress on calls with heads of State. Such a position would defy the legal interpretation of the Justice Department, which historically is given deference on the meaning of federal law. There was no indication that Atkinson had indicated that he would defy that interpretation. If he did, the Administration should make that position clear.

Atkinson was widely respected and was appointed by Trump to this position after a distinguished governmental career.

Tom Monheim, a career intelligence professional, will be named acting inspector general for the intelligence community. It is vital that President Trump fill this position as soon as possible.

401 thoughts on “Trump Fires Intelligence Community Inspector General Who Informed Congress Of The Ukraine Whistleblower Complaint”

  1. Young — Sorry that wasn’t clear. Political Science is one degree. Philosophy is another. For the pre-law option in both of these degrees, Phil 470 is required.

    Possibly graduates are able to go to better law schools than the one you attended?

    πŸŽ©πŸ‘”

    1. From my own experience I can say that philosophy courses offer little to aid the study of law. The approach to problems is very different in each. A friend of mine once remarked that law school at least increases one’s tolerance for ambiguity. I thought it well said. If you want to learn law, study law, not philosophy. Philosophy for law is not much more useful than philosophy or gender studies for engineers. History, on the other hand, can be useful.

      I don’t remember a single course on the philosophy of law in law school. History was learned almost incidentally through reading cases. One can scarcely help it. Many lawyers read history for pleasure: but I doubt many pick up a philosophy of law book more than once and then not for long. Most of the theories that look brilliant to an undergraduate look like b.s. to someone in the courts.

      1. Summa Theologiae, First Part, Question 1

        Whether, besides philosophy, any further doctrine is required?

        Even as regards those truths about God which human reason could have discovered, it was necessary that man should be taught by a divine revelation; because the truth about God such as reason could discover, would only be known by a few, and that after a long time, and with the admixture of many errors. Whereas man’s whole salvation, which is in God, depends upon the knowledge of this truth. Therefore, in order that the salvation of men might be brought about more fitly and more surely, it was necessary that they should be taught divine truths by divine revelation. It was therefore necessary that besides philosophical science built up by reason, there should be a sacred science learned through revelation.

        Whether sacred doctrine is nobler than other sciences?

        Since this science is partly speculative and partly practical, it transcends all others speculative and practical. Now one speculative science is said to be nobler than another, either by reason of its greater certitude, or by reason of the higher worth of its subject-matter. In both these respects this science surpasses other speculative sciences; in point of greater certitude, because other sciences derive their certitude from the natural light of human reason, which can err; whereas this derives its certitude from the light of divine knowledge, which cannot be misled: in point of the higher worth of its subject-matter because this science treats chiefly of those things which by their sublimity transcend human reason; while other sciences consider only those things which are within reason’s grasp. Of the practical sciences, that one is nobler which is ordained to a further purpose, as political science is nobler than military science; for the good of the army is directed to the good of the State. But the purpose of this science, in so far as it is practical, is eternal bliss; to which as to an ultimate end the purposes of every practical science are directed. Hence it is clear that from every standpoint, it is nobler than other sciences.

        – Saint Thomas Aquinas

        http://www.newadvent.org/summa/1001.htm

        TL; DR: Philosophy is essential but Theology is the noblest.

        1. OK, slow day. I’m game.

          By the time of Christ’s birth, about 47 billion people had been born and died, or about half of those who had been born in total from 50,000 years ago – a very conservative estimate of the appearance of modern homo sapiens – to 1950. That means that by St Acquinas’ reasoning, have of us, through no apparent fault of their own, were neither privy to knowing God by reason or by divine revelation. Therefore, it is not true that “in order that the salvation of men might be brought about more fitly and more surely….there should be a sacred science learned through revelation.” That didn’t happen.

          As to the transcendence of sacred doctrine, it is neither a science nor is it true that it “derives its certitude from the light of divine knowledge, which cannot be misled:”.One cannot walk a city block without finding disagreement among ordained Christian ministers on sacred doctrine, so someone – by deduction – is being misled.

          1. Btb,

            Blessed Palm Sunday to you.

            Great questions and thanks for engaging. Your questions are not new as they have asked for centuries. They have also been addressed for centuries (see footnotes that follow) much like the problem of pain, how a God can exist in the face of evil, why children suffer genetic disorders, cruel diseases like Aumyotropic Lateral Sclerosis, hunger, child abuse, spousal abuse, evil clerics (plenty in the Catholic Church but also Islam, Judaism, Buddhism, Hinduism, etc)

            First question is answered below this text

            Your second question is easy too.
            Medicine has plenty of leaders who disagree, as do attorneys, politicians, researchers, etc but we dont discard their disciplines

            “HE DESCENDED INTO HELL. ON THE THIRD DAY HE ROSE AGAIN”

            631 Jesus “descended into the lower parts of the earth. He who descended is he who also ascended far above all the heavens.”476 The Apostles’ Creed confesses in the same article Christ’s descent into hell and his Resurrection from the dead on the third day, because in his Passover it was precisely out of the depths of death that he made life spring forth:

            Christ, that Morning Star, who came back from the dead, and shed his peaceful light on all mankind, your Son who lives and reigns for ever and ever. Amen.477
            Paragraph 1. Christ Descended into Hell

            632 The frequent New Testament affirmations that Jesus was “raised from the dead” presuppose that the crucified one sojourned in the realm of the dead prior to his resurrection.478 This was the first meaning given in the apostolic preaching to Christ’s descent into hell: that Jesus, like all men, experienced death and in his soul joined the others in the realm of the dead. But he descended there as Savior, proclaiming the Good News to the spirits imprisoned there.479

            633 Scripture calls the abode of the dead, to which the dead Christ went down, “hell” – Sheol in Hebrew or Hades in Greek – because those who are there are deprived of the vision of God.480 Such is the case for all the dead, whether evil or righteous, while they await the Redeemer: which does not mean that their lot is identical, as Jesus shows through the parable of the poor man Lazarus who was received into “Abraham’s bosom”:481 “It is precisely these holy souls, who awaited their Savior in Abraham’s bosom, whom Christ the Lord delivered when he descended into hell.”482 Jesus did not descend into hell to deliver the damned, nor to destroy the hell of damnation, but to free the just who had gone before him.483

            634 “The gospel was preached even to the dead.”484 The descent into hell brings the Gospel message of salvation to complete fulfilment. This is the last phase of Jesus’ messianic mission, a phase which is condensed in time but vast in its real significance: the spread of Christ’s redemptive work to all men of all times and all places, for all who are saved have been made sharers in the redemption.

            635 Christ went down into the depths of death so that “the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God, and those who hear will live.”485 Jesus, “the Author of life”, by dying destroyed “him who has the power of death, that is, the devil, and [delivered] all those who through fear of death were subject to lifelong bondage.”486 Henceforth the risen Christ holds “the keys of Death and Hades”, so that “at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth.”487

            Today a great silence reigns on earth, a great silence and a great stillness. A great silence because the King is asleep. The earth trembled and is still because God has fallen asleep in the flesh and he has raised up all who have slept ever since the world began. . . He has gone to search for Adam, our first father, as for a lost sheep. Greatly desiring to visit those who live in darkness and in the shadow of death, he has gone to free from sorrow Adam in his bonds and Eve, captive with him – He who is both their God and the son of Eve. . . “I am your God, who for your sake have become your son. . . I order you, O sleeper, to awake. I did not create you to be a prisoner in hell. Rise from the dead, for I am the life of the dead

            Notes:

            476 Eph 4:9-10.
            477 Roman Missal, Easter Vigil 18, Exsultet.
            478 Acts 3:15; Rom 8:11; 1 Cor 15:20; cf. Heb 13:20.
            479 Cf. 1 Pet 3:18-19.
            480 Cf. Phil 2:10; Acts 2:24; Rev 1:18; Eph 4:9; Pss 6:6; 88:11-13.
            481 Cf. Ps 89:49; 1 Sam 28:19; Ezek 32:17-32; Lk 16:22-26.
            482 Roman Catechism I, 6, 3.
            483 Cf. Council of Rome (745): DS 587; Benedict XII, Cum dudum (1341): DS 1011; Clement VI, Super quibusdam (1351): DS 1077; Council of Toledo IV (625): DS 485; Mt 27:52-53.
            484 1 Pet 4:6.
            485 Jn 5:25; cf. Mt 12:40; Rom 10:7; Eph 4:9.
            486 Heb 2:14-15; cf. Acts 3:15.
            487 Rev 1:18; Phil 2:10.
            488 Ancient Homily for Holy Saturday: PG 43, 440A, 452C; LH, Holy Saturday, OR.

            http://www.vatican.va/archive/ccc_css/archive/catechism/p122a5p1.htm

            1. Thanks for your response Estovir.

              By that interpretation of scripture then, those who went before had been in “hell” for about 48,000 years and even if not getting the full treatment of persecution for bad acts unredeemed, had been bored out of their minds, to say the least. I hope the magazines were kept current.

              Sorry, couldn’t resist,

              Attorneys aren’t scientists and of course it is their purpose to disagree. Scientists disagree about somethings, but not those tested and settled. It is not arguable whether jet propulsion coupled with well designed aircraft will get you from DC to Denver or we’d be looking at more than a bail out for the industry. Those healing acts previously done by priests and ministers? We’ve got that. I’ve been so saved at least twice and arguably a 3rd time and lived to still be riding bicycles 20 miles at a time. .

              It’s a miracle!

              1. Scientists disagree about somethings, but not those tested and settled

                Remember how physicians and pharma have said since the 1990s that LDL / bad cholesterol caused heart attacks?
                That went out the window 10 years ago. Ask how many physicians know that atherosclerosis is now considered an inflammatory disease. Not many know

                A daily 81 mg Aspirin was said for decades to prevent heart attacks for primary prevention.
                That changed last year. Dont bother with Aspirin for primary prevention

                Omega-3 Fatty Acids, Flax Seed, Berries, Red Wine and Oats were shoved down our collective throats because we were told they prevented heart disease. Then January 2019 rolled around and that went to Hades

                Nothing is settled in science.

                Everyone is swearing by wearing masks to prevent catching SARS-CoV-19.
                Except the WHO says otherwise

                https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019/advice-for-public/when-and-how-to-use-masks

                As for magazines being kept current, you will have no WiFi, no Facebook, and worse, your true identity will be known by all. Now that’s a reason to pray a thorough Act of Contrition

                πŸ˜‰

                1. Estovir, thanks for the warning on my coming waiting room experience.

                  As I noted, much in science is settled or it would still be the 16th century. It is indeed arguable that we know the answers to all the big questions,and are now working on the details. If priests and shamans of the past had the impressive tricks of the scientists, they could be bidding that tithe up.

                2. “that LDL / bad cholesterol caused heart attacks?
                  That went out the window 10 years ago. Ask how many physicians know that atherosclerosis is now considered an inflammatory disease. Not many know”ou can

                  Estovir, as you say, nothing is fixed in science and indeed things evolve but the way you worded your comment could lead to confusion unless you believe my understanding is totally wrong which you can correct if you wish.

                  The measurements of LDL have evolved as things are able to be broken down into smaller parts so that one can more clearly measure what is the likely cause and what is the likely effect.

                  I don’t think you are saying that LDL or portions of it aren’t dangerous to many lives, are you?

                  As far as atherosclerosis and inflammatory disease, those ideas have been around for decades though have gained increasing prominence.

                  Everything evolves so I am sure the exact statements of the 90’s have to be altered today and will again be altered tomorrow.

  2. At Washington State University the pre-law degree options in Political Science and Philosophy come with a requirement of Phil 470, Philosophy of Law. The option in History offers an alternative of Phil 370.

    🎩

      1. Benson, I should be rather surprised if a course named “Political Science and Philosophy” didn’t actually have a course in philosophy. Maybe now it is ‘intersectionality and gender dynamics and women and minorities hurt worst’ given the trend in university these days. Either way, it is useless for law.

  3. Paul,

    In Conklin v. Medtronics it was held that a claim based on an Arizona common law failure to warn tort must fail because of federal preemption under federal law. Absent the federal issue the common law duty to warn clearly exists under Arizona law. As I said, Arizona is a common law state. It comes up all the time.

    1. Young – I will bow to your superior knowledge, however it nags me that I still think I am right. πŸ˜‰

      1. Best thing is to research it until you are comfortable with the result either way.

        A good case to see the common law mechanism in operation is Canterbury v Spence. It is a federal case and technically there is no federal common law, but the mechanism is the same. The court reached its conclusion by drawing on root principles and extendng them despite contrary existing law. The Tarasoff case in California was similar in that it appeared to contradict existing law. The question is, how did these lawyers know they had a cause of action in spite of existing law? By understanding the core machinery of common law in part.

  4. To me, the more interesting question is: Why haven’t we heard a word about an investigation of the underlying issues yet. The fact that the entire focus has been on President Trump and his administration while the activities of Joe and Hunter Biden have been relegated to a footnote is astonishing to me.

    1. My point is that studying philosophy of law is not going to make you particularly capable at any discussion of it with a lawyer. You will bore them. You would likely find a friendly audience for a few minutes among faculty whose lives revolve around uttering and pretending to listen to b.s.

      Go back to Aristotle and Plato. By the way, Plato’s legal philosophy didn’t go over so well in Syracuse. I think they drove him out of town after giving it a try.

      The original author of The Consolstion of Philosophy didn’t end well either.

      Nor, for that matter did the philosopher emperor (Aurelius) choose well for his successor.

      1. β€œNor, for that matter did the philosopher emperor (Aurelius) choose well for his successor.β€œ
        ****************
        But he did a damn good job in the position which is all that matters.

  5. Young, to hang out a shingle and advertise services, the professional engineer must do as I stated. Then he can practice in much the same sense as lawyers and doctors.

    πŸŽ©πŸ—Ό

    1. If so, it still does not touch on my main point. I doubt philosophy is any more useful to engineers than it is to lawyers or physicists or, for that matter, doctors.

      Why do you cling to trivia?

  6. My hat is off to Jonathan for the thoughtful measured article It is a very principled articulate article that proves he still has an idealistic streakMy own criticism is that Brother Jonathan was a First Amendment absolutist and yet he believes that the whistleblower complalaint should have been secretJust as the Pentagon Papers this document is in the purview of the public s right to know

  7. Young, professional engineers, like architects, practice. Requires a P.E. exam and a license.

    πŸŽ©πŸ—Ό

    1. Practicing doesn’t mean taking an exam or having a license. Lincoln never went to law school or took a bar exam. Could be the term also applies to engineers but I haven’t heard it. No matter. Doesn’t touch on my main point.

    1. Not much. My undergraduate degree was in philosophy and I came to recognize it had little to offer lawyers. Stephen Weinberg said the same thing about philosophy and physics.

      History is better. A good bit about Anglo/American law an be learned by reading the histories of England by Hume and Maculay, though you won’t know you are learning it at the time. Blackstone and Fortescue are also great.

      Pollock and Maitland’s History of English Law Before the Time of Edward I is also great but probably not accessible without some history and law before taking it up. Philosophy probably has a greater role in Civil Law.

      Unless you live in Louisiana you live under common law.

    1. I doubt you are much better informed for reading it, at least not by much. Cardozo, a great, had a crack at it with his “The Nature of the Judicial Process”. I came away with the impression, possibly incorrect, that as with medicine you can learn only so much by reading and at some point you have to get blood on your hands with actual experience. That may be why one practices law and medicine but engineers do engineering.

      I suspect Paul might agree, but I would appreciate hearing his opinion.

      I think it would be interesting to hear Prof. Turley on this subject as well.

      Legal thinking is different but it is difficult to say how. I have wondered if the civilians approach legal issues very differently from common law lawyers but don’t know enough Civil Law to come to a sound conclusion. Civil Law, itself, is a little like engineering while common law grows a bit like an evolving species.

      Interesting questions that have absorbed me from time to time.

      1. Young – Arizona is one of the states that has gotten rid of the Common Law. If it isn’t in the statutes, it doesn’t exist. πŸ˜‰ The difference with legal thinking is that it also depends on legal precedence. Those can change from state to state, district to district and circuit to circuit.

        1. Arizona has not gotten rid of common law. I have heard that from Arizona lawyers before and they are wrong. It has gotten rid of common law marriage, not the body of common law.

          When you speak of precedents you are speaking of a common law system. Precedents do not have the force of law in Civil Law systems like Louisiana, Europe and Scotland. Precedents do have the force of law, either persuasive or mandatory, in Arizona. The UCC, for example, has a provision that allows one to draw on common law for questions not adequately covered in the Code itself. I have used it for interpretation and enforcement of a contract for sale subject to a condition precedent. Sales, of course, are governed by Article 2 but the Code does not cover subjects that refined.

          When you cite to one of the Restatements know that you are citing to a condensation of common law.

            1. Maybe. Could you give me a citation to the statute?

              I think you still have a lot of common law torts and property rules.

                1. Yes, some common law is converted into statutes. Even the Statute of Westminster II in 1285 (Edward I) did that. But basically you are saying all of case law is converted into statute. I don’t think so.

                    1. I don’t know what you didn’t say. Case law is common law evolving. Common law is the customary law of the courts, which is case law. Restatements can be cited with some measure of authority because they are restatement of the common law.

                    2. Young – Nothing in this article shall adversely affect the rights or the enforcement of rights in marks acquired in good faith at any time at common law.

                      In all honesty I have no idea what the heck this means. πŸ˜‰

                2. I remember years ago going to a CLE on LLCs in Arizona and the presenters were reluctant then to advise their clients to adopt that business form because there was not a lot of case law on it yet. That case law would be a form of common law. It is not statutory law but it has the force of law where it counts-in the courts.

            2. I recall some years ago looking at the jury instructions for an Arizona medical malpractice case. My recollection was that they were largely based on case, common law, rather than statute and had much in common with similar instructions in other states–common law. Even when a statute does address it, the statute is often a statement of common law and courts feel free to tinker with it. The Tarasov rule in California was first case law, then statutory law, and then modified by subsequent cases because the courts didn’t think the legislature got their point right. When the statute was first passed I thought the courts wouldn’t put up with it because the legislature got a core case law idea wrong.

            3. Another possibility is that you got rid of common law crimes. Not all states did. Kevorkian was prosecuted under a common law crime because the state forgot to pass a statute prohibiting physician assisted suicide. But where states have eliminated common law crimes they normally have kept common law for civil issues.

              1. Young – I vaguely remember a statement saying we do not recognize the common law. Now this goes back to the mid 70s, so I am grasping at straws here.

                1. Be interesting if you could find a statute to that effect. I think it likely you heard that Arizona did not recognize common law marriage or common law crimes. Don’t you do CLEs? Common law comes up often.

                  1. Young – I retired 10 years ago, no reason to do CLEs. Anyway, I am a retired humanities teacher who was a former paralegal.

          1. When you read Arizona cases (or California or Florida, etc) you are reading common law, even to an extent when the case deals with a statute it often draws on precedents for construction. A usual rule is that a statute in derogation of the common law is to be narrowly construed.

    2. Thank you so much for this pertinent post. I read the whole thing. May I take the test now?

      Actually, this circuitous, convoluted fable of incoherent, looping fiction provides profound insight as to the methodology of the inexorable, incremental, communist subjugation of the U.S., which was to stupefy, mesmerize then adroitly slip the chains around the necks of Americans.

      Well, that happened!

  8. I watched today’s press conference on coronavirus and heard the IG question raised.

    The President explained the problem beautifully and the only question I had was why he didn’t fire the contemptible jerk sooner.

    I think he betrayed his trust, his oath and the country and should never be eligible for another federal job again other than breaking rocks in Ft. Leavenworth.

  9. Minor factoid which Allan had wrong. The White House oval office has 2 regular doors, 2 hidden doors and 2 window-doors.

    🎩

    1. David, I’m sure when I talked about the threshold I wasn’t stating how many doors there are in the Oval Office. I don’t remember counting them when I was there. If I go again I will check to see if you are correct.

      I couldn’t refer to my note because yours is totally separated from it. You should correct your problems if you want more specific discussions. You have had this problem a long time and still haven’t resolved it.

  10. Why do you assume the IG’s motive for his action to be pure, but assume the President’s actions to retaliatory? You do not know what was in the heart of either man motivating their actions. I think your assumptions say more about your thinking than they do about either the former IG or the President. Maybe a little personal reflection is in order?

    1. HR, Trump is as transparent as 5 year old.

      Atkinson has shown no indication of partsanship – his main claim to fame prior was in prosecuting Rep. William Jefferson – a Democrat – for fraud as well as a mayor od DC – guess what party he might have been a member of?

      Trump has fired one person after another for not kissing his fat corrupt a.s. Do you need a road sign?

      1. Atkinson has shown no indication of partsanship –

        Except for the procedural scamming around which allowed the fake whistleblower to file a complaint, which then had to be disclosed to Congress as it was the IC’s IG and not an agency IG.

        1. The IG followed the law and rightly notified Congress of the accusations which proved both accurate and significant. There was nothing fake about the WB or his complaint, even if Barr predictably tried to bury it.

          1. The IG followed the law a

            Actually, he revised the rules to treat an ineligible party as an eligible party. The significance of this escapes you.

            And if you fancy Schiff wasn’t in the know before he was ‘notified’, I’m vending bridges.

            1. Revised you say?

              What sinister villain occasioned that?

              Oops!

              Another hasty evisceration equal in effectiveness and intensity to a lethal sortie of Mes “Clarence Darrow” Po, Esq.

              Caveat emptor, those bridges come at a dear price.

    2. HR, don’t you find it reasonable to attribute the worst of motivations to anything the perpetual liar in the White House says or does? He has demonstrated time and again how venal and petty he is.

  11. You assume that IG Atkinson’s motives in accepting this complaint and presenting it to Congress were pure, and in the interests of transparency. After all of the documented corruption that has been uncovered, I don’t know how you could still believe this.

    Quoting you:
    “Atkinson was wrong in his interpretation of the complaint failing within the statutory scheme for reporting to Congress.”
    And
    “I believe that Atkinson should have yielded to the legal judgment of the Justice Department on the interpretation of this law.”

    1) Atkinson was woefully deficient in determining the validity and justification for making a complaint of this type, which should have been obvious to someone with his experience.
    2) Atkinson went against the Justice Department, who were correct in their interpretation of the law.

    If this doesn’t justify President Trump’s loss of confidence in this man, then what does?

    1. Akkard:

      1) Every major accusation in the WB complaint was proven during the hearings and involved the President extorting another head of state to announce a public investigation of his main political rival using funds appropriated by the Congress. Of course it should have been reported.
      2) The DOJ is regrettably headed by the toadie Barr who has regularly dishonestly spun information to Trump’s advantage. He’s not the AG, he’s Trump’s attorney.

      1. Every major accusation in the WB complaint was proven during the hearings

        The term ‘proven’ does not mean what you fancy it means. You also need to learn the distinction between facts and interpretation.

          1. Again, you need to learn the difference between a fact and the significance of a fact. Since the transcript was released, we had the facts. What spin you wish to put on it is not ‘proven’, quite the contrary.

          1. Neither one of you BS artists dare to challenge the facts. I’m not the issue, the facts are.

            The WB was correct on virtually all of his accusations and until one of you cowards steps forward and proves that statement wrong, it stands as a fact.

    1. The Democrats were aided by the NYT & Washington Putz in defending China until they turned on our President

    1. Book, I’m sure you’ve driven through Missouri. In that route from Saint Louis to Kansas City one feels they’re passing through the center of America.

      Kansas City is almost equal distance between New York and L.A. Kansas City is also equal distance between Chicago and Dallas. The milage splits almost perfectly in half to those 4 cities from K.C.

      Saint Louis ranked among America’s 10 Largest Cities for 100 years. It at # 5 in 1900. Saint Loius, and Kansas City as well, were major, major hubs in the Golden Age of Railroads. But Saint Loius rapidly declined when it no longer had thousands of railroad passengers wandering Downtown each day.

      1. I’ve only been there once, and then just passing through. I don’t know it. I know neighboring Arkansas, rival Chicago, parts of Indiana, but otherwise not much on the mid-west.

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