Press Releases

Washington—Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) today released the following statement on the firing of Glenn Fine as Defense Department inspector general. Fine had been selected to chair the Pandemic Response Accountability Committee, which will oversee funds allocated through the coronavirus relief bill passed last month:

“President Trump’s removal of acting Defense Department Inspector General Glenn Fine is part of a troubling pattern of attacks on independent oversight.

“Mr. Fine has a long track record as an independent and effective watchdog. He served from 2000 to 2011 as the Justice Department’s inspector general and since 2015 in the Defense Department’s Office of Inspector General.

“Just last week he was selected to be chair of the Pandemic Response Accountability Committee, which will oversee trillions of taxpayer dollars in coronavirus relief funds. By removing him from his post at the Pentagon, President Trump effectively removed him from the coronavirus oversight role as well.

“The president last month said he could direct the coronavirus IG to refuse to share information with Congress. Over the weekend he fired Intelligence Community Inspector General Michael Atkinson. And on Monday Trump accused the HHS inspector general’s office of political bias for reporting that hospitals face supply shortages.

“Independent oversight is more important than ever, particularly during a public health crisis. Congress must do more to protect the ability of inspectors general to do their critical work. This can’t become a sustained pattern.”