Republican Senator Mitt Romney has once again found himself opposed to President Trump.
After being the only Republican to back the effort to impeach Trump—and having clashed with him on multiple occasions—Romney is now standing arm-in-arm with Democrats who are calling for the president to provide “full transparency.”
In a new letter Romney penned with Democrat Senator John Tester, the duo said they want Trump to “ensure full transparency and willingness for independent oversight.”
“This is a critical time in our nation’s history and each agency plays a vital role in our recovery,” the two senators wrote as BizPac Review reports. “With trillions of taxpayer dollars being spent, it is critically important for the Administration to ensure full transparency and willingness for independent oversight.”
The continued: “As you work to implement COVID-19 legislation, we ask that you provide Congress a detailed plan on how the government plans to execute these funds and what accountability measures are being put in place to ensure our taxpayer dollars are being spent efficiently and effectively.”
“The Special Inspector General is also tasked with keeping Congress informed through quarterly reports that detail all of the loans, loan guarantees, or other investments,” the duo added. “We expect that the Special Inspector General will fulfill its statutory responsibilities, and look forward to working with your administration to ensure robust oversight of taxpayer dollars.”
BizPac Review reports the two men are calling for Trump to resist the urge in intervening with the coronavirus relief programs he signed into law and he already approved of:
The duo further noted that the emergency coronavirus spending bill signed by the president himself last week explicitly calls for the establishment of a Special Inspector General for Pandemic Recovery to “conduct, supervise, and coordinate audits and investigations of the making, purchase, management, and sale of loans, loan guarantees, and other investments made by the Treasury Secretary.”
Given as it was Trump himself who’d signed the bill into law, it’s not clear why Romney and Tester believed he wasn’t already aware of this stipulation.
In fact, only after hours the two submitted their letter, the president announced plans to nominate Brian D. Miller, currently with White House Counsel, to the post.
According to the White House statement, Miller now serves as “Special Assistant to the President and Senior Associate Counsel in the Office of White House Counsel.”
“Prior to his current role, Mr. Miller served as an independent corporate monitor and an expert witness,” the White House continued. “He also practiced law in the areas of ethics and compliance, government contracts, internal investigations, white collar, and suspension and debarment. Mr. Miller has successfully represented clients in government investigations and audits, suspension and debarment proceedings, False Claims Act, and criminal cases.”
Mr. Miller served as the Senate-confirmed Inspector General for the General Services Administration for nearly a decade, where he led more than 300 auditors, special agents, attorneys, and support staff in conducting nationwide audits and investigations. As Inspector General, Mr. Miller reported on fraud, waste, and abuse, most notably with respect to excesses at a GSA conference in Las Vegas.
Mr. Miller also served in high-level positions within the Department of Justice, including as Senior Counsel to the Deputy Attorney General and as Special Counsel on Healthcare Fraud. He also served as an Assistant United States Attorney in the Eastern District of Virginia, where he handled civil fraud, False Claims Act, criminal, and appellate cases.