Trump’s zeal for administration firings denigrates public servants
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It should not be this hard to serve your country.

That’s what deposed Veterans Affairs Secretary David ShulkinDavid Jonathon ShulkinVA inspector general says former top official steered M contract to friend Schumer demands answers in use of unproven coronavirus drug on veterans Former Trump VA secretary says staffer found plans to replace him in department copier MORE told the country as he followed a train of dedicated public servants out the door for apparently less-than-enthusiastic endorsements of the impetuous and vindictive management style of President Donald Trump.

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In perhaps his last turn on the national stage, Shulkin blamed his ouster on wrongheaded efforts to privatize the VA to reward a few at the expense of undermining care for millions veterans, and vowed to stay committed to resist privatization.

He joins FBI Director James ComeyJames Brien ComeyThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Mastercard - Dem leaders back smaller COVID-19 relief bill as pandemic escalates Trump blasts special counsel Durham for moving too slowly Biden plans to keep Wray as FBI director: report MORE, fired for failing to pledge his loyalty to Trump and refusing to drop his investigation of former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn while investigating Trump’s campaign’s ties to Russia; Deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabeAndrew George McCabeCarter Page sues over surveillance related to Russia probe McCabe defends investigation of Trump before Senate committee: We had 'many reasons' The Hill's 12:30 Report: What to know about the Pfizer vaccine announcement MORE, fired hours before he became eligible for a pension in retaliation for being willing to provide corroborating evidence that Comey’s firing was an effort to obstruct justice; and H.R. McMaster, who preferred professionals to walk-on amateurs with seeming conflicts of interest in matters of national security.

Others have simply quit, overwhelmed by the chaos and incompetence of a man who declines expert advice in favor of telegenic talking heads. Place in that category Joseph Yun, the State Department’s special representative for North Korea policy, who leaves in apparent frustration on the eve of talks between Trump and the North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un, and Walter ShaubWalter Michael ShaubEthics experts ask Senate to investigate Graham's probe of mail-in voting Interior 'propaganda' video and tweets may violate ethics laws, experts say Louisiana House candidate fundraises off opponent's tweet about wife's 'premonition' dream MORE, director of the Office of Government Ethics, who was critical of the president’s failure to meet the ethical standards, including divestiture of his private assets, of his predecessors.

White House Communications Director Hope HicksHope Charlotte HicksWomen set to take key roles in Biden administration President says Trump Jr. doing 'very well' after COVID-19 diagnosis Donald Trump Jr. tests positive for COVID-19 MORE resigned a day after testifying – and acknowledging “white lies” on Trump’s behalf – before the House Intelligence Committee. White House press secretary Sean SpicerSean Michael SpicerRealClearPolitics editor corrects Giuliani on Pennsylvania claim: 'This is false' Job-seeking Trump officials likely to get chilly reception on K Street Trump challenges electoral process as hopes for victory fade MORE, who seemed uncomfortable from Day One with misleading statements about Trump’s inaugural crowd size, finally stepped down after a remarkable and humiliating stream of exaggerations and falsehoods.

Secretary of State Rex TillersonRex Wayne TillersonBiden looks to career officials to restore trust, morale in government agencies Biden's State Department picks are a diplomatic slam dunk President Trump: To know him is to 'No' him MORE fell afoul of Trump for disparaging him in private and not deigning to correct the record but also for saying the poisoning of a former Russian spy in Britain was “clearly” Russia’s doing; for that, he was tweeted out the next day.

Trump’s top economic advisor Gary CohnGary David CohnThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by the UAE Embassy in Washington, DC - Trump OKs transition; Biden taps Treasury, State experience On The Money: Markets soar on Pfizer vaccine news | EU imposes tariffs on B of US goods over Boeing | Business groups applaud Biden's push for masks Former Trump economic aide Gary Cohn congratulates Biden MORE, one of the few professionals in what Sen. Bob CorkerRobert (Bob) Phillips CorkerGOP lawmaker patience runs thin with Trump tactics Former GOP senator: Republicans cannot let Trump's 'reckless' post-election claims stand Cornyn: Relationships with Trump like 'women who get married and think they're going to change their spouse' MORE (R-Tenn.) called the West Wing “adult day care center,” acknowledged he was under “enormous pressure” to resign in the wake of Trump’s offensive statements about the “very fine” neo-Nazis who marched through Charlottesville last summer, but ultimately stepped down when his advice on tariff policy was not just ignored but mocked.

High-profile outright firings include former U.S. Attorney Preet BhararaPreetinder (Preet) Singh BhararaWhat a Biden administration should look like Democratic attorneys criticize House Judiciary Democrats' questioning of Barr Clyburn echoes calls to rename Pettus bridge MORE, who Trump had promised his job, and former “Apprentice” contestant Omarosa Manigault for – don’t ask.

Long-suffering Reince PriebusReinhold (Reince) Richard PriebusFauci says he has not talked to Biden: He doesn't want to 'put me in a compromised position' Trump adviser says president will give Biden 'a little bit more room to explain himself' at next debate Priebus expecting Trump win in election that will go 'down to the wire' MORE tried to keep the lid on a boiling-over caldron of scandals and embarrassments but finally got the boot in a Trump tweet from Air Force One announcing his successor as Priebus sat on the tarmac at Andrews Air Force Base in the rain.

The many names of those standing on banana peels waiting for a shove include the badgered architect of our renewed war on marijuana and voting rights, Attorney General Jefferson Beauregard Sessions, and his deputy, Rod J. Rosenstein, both still standing between Trump and his nemesis, the Special Counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) MuellerBarr taps attorney investigating Russia probe origins as special counsel CNN's Toobin warns McCabe is in 'perilous condition' with emboldened Trump CNN anchor rips Trump over Stone while evoking Clinton-Lynch tarmac meeting MORE.

Oh, yes: Robert Mueller, a Republican appointed FBI director by presidents of both parties, has been a potential target since at least last June. He has indicted 19 so far and is subpoenaing Trump business records, a Trump “red line.” More than 160 of us in Congress are trying to get a vote on the bipartisan Special Counsel Integrity Act that sets conditions for such firings – before Mueller’s name is added to this list.

The evident pleasure the man in the White House gets from such firings and force-outs is legendary; he first made a name for himself beyond the tabloids with his inane reality television show slogan, “you’re fired.” He now denigrates dedicated public servants with the same sadistic flourish.

It really should not be this hard to serve your country.

Congressman Steve CohenStephen (Steve) Ira CohenDe Blasio mum on whether he'll block sale of Mets to controversial investor Two ethics groups call on House to begin impeachment inquiry against Barr Jewish lawmakers targeted by anti-Semitic tweets ahead of election: ADL MORE represents Tennessee’s 9th District.