Dems call on Trump to fire Acosta

Dems call on Trump to fire Acosta
© Stefani Reynolds

Three House Democrats are collecting signatures for a letter calling on President TrumpDonald John TrumpDem lawmaker says Electoral College was 'conceived' as way to perpetuate slavery Stanley Cup champion Washington Capitals to visit White House on Monday Transportation Dept requests formal audit of Boeing 737 Max certification MORE to demand the resignation of Labor Secretary Alexander AcostaRene (Alex) Alexander AcostaUS Attorney's Office in Miami recuses itself from Epstein case Trump should fire Labor Secretary Acosta for cowardice in child sex abuse case Dems call on Trump to fire Acosta MORE.

The push comes a day after a federal judge ruled that Acosta and other federal prosecutors acted illegally in making a plea deal with accused child sexual abuser and billionaire Jeffrey Epstein before speaking with his victims. 

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“Despite abundant evidence and multiple witnesses still willing to come forward, then-U.S. Attorney Acosta failed to charge Epstein under federal trafficking laws, which could have put Epstein away for life,” the letter states. “Instead, he pleaded guilty to far lesser prostitution-related charges and served only 13 months in a private wing of a county jail but was able to leave 6 days a week for 12 hours at a time.”

The letter is being organized by Democratic Reps. Jackie SpeierKaren (Jackie) Lorraine Jacqueline SpeierOvernight Defense: Senate breaks with Trump on Yemen war | Shanahan hit with ethics complaint over Boeing ties | Pentagon rolls out order to implement transgender ban | Dem chair throws cold water on Space Force budget Hillicon Valley: US threatens to hold intel from Germany over Huawei | GOP senator targets FTC over privacy | Bipartisan bill would beef up 'internet of things' security | Privacy groups seize on suspended NSA program | Tesla makes U-turn Shuttering of NSA surveillance program emboldens privacy groups MORE (Calif.), Debbie Wasserman SchultzDeborah (Debbie) Wasserman SchultzGOP turns Venezuela into Florida attack line Dem lawmakers unveil Journalist Protection Act amid Trump attacks on media Trump's emergency declaration looms over Pentagon funding fight MORE (Fla.) and Lois FrankelLois Jane FrankelOvernight Health Care — Presented by PCMA — FDA issues proposal to limit sales of flavored e-cigs | Trump health chief gets grilling | Divisions emerge over House drug pricing bills | Dems launch investigation into short-term health plans Dems call on Trump to fire Acosta Lawmakers wear white to State of the Union to show solidarity with women MORE (Fla.).

“This despicable unjust plea deal that was arranged by Acosta showed no respect for the suffering of the victims and credible accounts of human trafficking and was a clear abuse of power for political gain,” the lawmakers write.

The letter says Acosta’s mishandling of the situation shows he's unfit to serve in the administration, arguing he “succumbed to the pressure” from Epstein’s legal team while disregarding the law.

“As Members of Congress we are committed to ensuring that those who occupy top positions in the federal government are held to the highest standards of the law,” they said. “We strongly believe that Secretary Acosta was negligent in his duty to represent the best interests of the victims and the U.S. Government. As such, we request that you immediately demand his letter of resignation.”

Lawmakers had until 2 p.m. Friday to add their signatures to the letter.

Epstein has been accused of setting up a network of underage girls for sex that included as many as 80 young women. Victims were allegedly asked to recruit more women for the scheme.

The Democrats cited reporting by the Miami Herald in November that said multiple women “were intimidated by Epstein and his staff and told not to talk to the police,” even after his arrest.