Senior Adviser to Pompeo Resigns, Will Testify in Impeachment Hearings

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Senior Adviser to Pompeo Resigns, Will Testify in Impeachment Hearings

Michael McKinley has been testifying behind closed doors in the House impeachment probe Wednesday just as week after resigning as Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s senior adviser, and CNN explains why this development could be very significant:

McKinley, a former US ambassador, planned to open his testimony by telling investigators that his resignation was driven by his concern that the Department’s leadership was not supporting career foreign service officers, according to a source familiar. In the first hour of the testimony, McKinley specifically raised concerns about the removal of Ambassador Marie Yovanovitch from Ukraine, and how the State Department did little to protect her, said a source familiar with his remarks.

McKinley’s relationship with Pompeo dates back to when the current Secretary was head of the CIA, which makes his choice to avoid a subpoena by sitting for a transcribed interview even more curious. But it appears that resentment has grown between McKinley and his former boss:

McKinley started to grow increasingly weary when a damning State Department Inspector General report came out in late August documenting alleged inappropriate leadership practices of Assistant Secretary Kevin Moley, a Trump appointee. McKinley viewed the decision not to fire Moley as “not only wrong, but unconscionable,” the source explained.

In the wake of the Ukraine scandal, the state department has grown increasingly and transparently nervous, and it appears that the straw that broke the camel’s back in terms of of McKinly’s resignation was the lack of defense for former Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch, who was thrown under the bus by Trump in his phone call with the Ukrainian president and not rescued by anyone at State.

The extent to which his outrage at the state of affairs in the Trump administration outweighs his long relationship with Pompeo could determine how much damage he does in Wednesday’s testimony.

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