Congressional Democrats announced on Monday that they have issued subpoenas to four top aides to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo over the firing of State Department Inspector General Steve Linick. Reps. Eliot Engel (D-NY), House Oversight Chairwoman Carolyn Maloney (D-NY) and Sen. Bob Menendez (D-NJ) explained in a joint statement that they believe Linick was fired as retaliation for investigating some of Pompeo's personnel matters, and because the White House is involved in a "cover up."
"The Administration continues to cover up the real reasons for Mr. Linick’s firing by stonewalling the Committees’ investigation and refusing to engage in good faith," the Democrats write. "That stonewalling has made today’s subpoenas necessary."
The four aides targeted for testimony include:
The subpoenas are for:— Kyle Cheney (@kyledcheney) August 3, 2020
-Brian Bulatao, Under Secretary of State for Management
-Marik String, Acting State Department Legal Adviser
-Michael Miller, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Political-Military Affairs
-Toni A. Porter, Senior Adviser
Pompeo has denied the allegation that Linick was fired in May because of his investigations. The secretary of state suggested to the press that it had more to do with leaks and the mishandling of sensitive intel.
By the way, many of those accusations, Pompeo noted, appeared to be coming from Sen. Menendez's office.
"I don't get my ethics guidance from a man who was criminally prosecuted, case number 15-155, New Jersey Federal District Court," Pompeo said.
Pompeo also reminded the media that "the president has the unilateral right to choose who he wants to be his inspector general at every agency in the federal government."