Mike Pompeo Fired Me for ‘No Valid Reason,’ Inspector General Steve Linick Says

Former State Department Inspector General Steve Linick told Congress that he was “shocked” to find out President Trump decided to remove him from his post last month and that senior officials in the State Department had consistently told him they were satisfied with the office’s work.

“I can tell you … that I’ve been given no valid reason that would justify my removal,” Linick said, according to his interview transcripts released by multiple congressional committees Capitol Hill Wednesday. “I had a number of other contacts within the department, senior level, who always commented that we treated people fairly, that we were a productive office, and that we were doing a great job.”

Linick was fired in May by President Trump after Secretary of State Mike Pompeo had requested his removal for allegedly not adhering to the department’s “ethos” statement, which includes phrases such as “I am a champion of American diplomacy,” and for supposedly engaging in a pattern of unauthorized leaks. Linick told Congress during his interview on Capitol Hill that Pompeo’s explanations for why he was terminated “are either misplaced or unfounded.”

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