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Photo: Brendan Smialowski/AFP via Getty Images

President Trump has proposed slashing funds for Inspector General offices — nonpartisan government watchdogs — at five different agencies, according to a new report released on Wednesday by Democratic Senator Claire McCaskill.

Why it matters: IGs play an important roll in government accountability and surveillance of potential wrongdoing by government agencies. For example, the FBI's watchdog was tasked with looking into the agency's handling of the Hillary Clinton probe in 2016, as well as the anti-Trump texts between two FBI officials.

The big picture: The proposed budget would cut funding next year for IGs at the Environmental Protection Agency, Homeland Security, State Department, the Treasury, Department of Agriculture, and the Troubled Asset Relief Program, according to the report.

  • The IG offices at the General Services Administration, Defense Department, Veterans Affairs, Health and Human Services and the Justice Department were not given the budget increases requested.

What they're saying: The DHS OIG said that substantially reducing its budget "while increasing the budget and activities of DHS, critically impairs the DHS OIG’s ability to carry out its statutory oversight responsibilities," according to a release by McCaskill's office.

Go deeper

Dion Rabouin, author of Markets
31 mins ago - Economy & Business

Biden's inflation danger

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

President-elect Joe Biden's $1.9 trillion stimulus proposal has economists and bullish market analysts revising their U.S. growth expectations higher, predicting a reflation of the economy in 2021 and possibly more booming returns for risk assets.

Yes, but: Others are warning that what's expected to be reflation could actually show up as inflation, a much less welcome phenomenon.

Ina Fried, author of Login
2 hours ago - Technology

CES was largely irrelevant this year

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Forced online by the pandemic and overshadowed by the attack on the Capitol, the 2021 edition of CES was mostly an afterthought as media's attention focused elsewhere.

Why it matters: The consumer electronics trade show is the cornerstone event for the Consumer Technology Association and Las Vegas has been the traditional early-January gathering place for the tech industry.

The FBI is tracing a digital trail to Capitol rioters

Illustration: Sarah Grillo

Capitol rioters, eager to share proof of their efforts with other extremists online, have so far left a digital footprint of at least 140,000 images that is making it easier for federal law enforcement officials to capture and arrest them.

The big picture: Law enforcement's use of digital tracing isn't new, and has long been at the center of fierce battles over privacy and civil liberties. The Capitol siege is opening a fresh front in that debate.