Engel Statement on Manhattan U.S. Attorney's Resignation

Engel Statement on Manhattan U.S. Attorney's Resignation

Congressman Eliot L. Engel issued the following statement: 

“It’s clear to me that Donald Trump and his top lieutenant, Bill Barr, wanted to sideline former Manhattan US Attorney Geoffrey Berman because his office is looking into the President—obstruction of justice has seemingly become this administration’s tactic of choice—but what’s especially bizarre about this episode was their inability to get their story straight. Mr. Barr couldn’t fire Mr. Berman, though he apparently tried. Later, Mr. Barr claimed the President fired Mr. Berman, but the President says he’s ‘not involved.’ Fortunately, Mr. Berman didn’t roll over to their bullying and refused to step down until the appropriate interim replacement was named.

“I called on Attorney General Barr to resign ages ago. My position hasn’t changed.

“This Friday-night-into-Saturday-afternoon massacre was just another scheme by Trump to get beyond the reach of accountability. As Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee, my office has been investigating the firing of the State Department Inspector General. He and other IGs have been sacked by Trump in an effort to undermine our democracy and scuttle the checks and balances that undergird our system of government. I plan to continue the Committee’s inquiry into the State IG firing and will fight this administration every step of the way as he takes one autocratic step after another.”