Sep 23, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Trump nominates former Nunes aide to be intelligence community watchdog

Devin Nunes

Devin Nunes. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

President Trump on Wednesday announced his intent to nominate National Security Council official Allen Souza, a former aide to Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.), to serve as the inspector general of the intelligence community.

Why it matters: Trump fired the IC's previous inspector general Michael Atkinson for his handling of a whistleblower complaint about the president's call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. Atkinson's decision to turn over the complaint to Congress ultimately led to Trump's impeachment.

The big picture: Trump has sought to purge a number of inspectors general, which serve as internal watchdogs to promote transparency and curb abuses at executive branch agencies.

  • Nunes, whom Souza worked for on the House Intelligence Committee, is known as a Trump loyalist.
  • Souza has previously worked as a lawyer at the National Security Agency and served as a special assistant U.S. attorney for the district of Maryland, according to the White House.
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