The State Department’s inspector general, who was fired by President Trump on Friday night, had just finished investigating an aide to Mike Pompeo who was accused of covering up workplace violence, Politico reports. Pompeo recommended that Trump fire Steve Linick but has repeatedly declined to say why he wanted the watchdog gone. “Frankly, I should have done it some time ago,” he said on Wednesday, adding that he wouldn’t give specifics about personnel matters. Politico reports that Linick’s office had recently concluded that Cam Henderson, head of the department’s Office of Protocol, had not properly reported allegations that her former boss, Sean Lawler, had intimidated and harassed staff, and carried a whip around on the job. The Office of Protocol helped Pompeo and his wife Susan host intimate, taxpayer-funded dinners with elite conservatives that the IG had also been probing.
Linick’s office had also been investigating the Pompeos’ alleged use of a government staffer as a personal assistant. On Wednesday, Pompeo denied that Linick’s ouster was retribution for internal probes. “I have no sense of what investigations were taking place,” he said. “I couldn’t possibly have retaliated.”