Trump fires top official who told him election wasn't rigged

Donald Trump has fired the head of a federal agency who confirmed that the presidential election was fair. 

The outgoing US President sacked Christopher Krebs, the director of Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) over Twitter, claiming that his defence of the security of the election was ‘highly inaccurate’.

The move to axe Mr Krebs, who was appointed by Mr Trump, comes as various high-level officials seen as insufficiently loyal are removed by the President, who is refusing to recognise the victory of Joe Biden. His behaviour has alarmed experts, politicians and many in his own party, who admit any claims that the election was rigged are unfounded. Mr Trump fired defence secretary Mark Esper on November 9, part of a broader shake-up that put Trump loyalists in senior Defence positions.

Mr Krebs, a former Microsoft executive, ran CISA from its creation in the wake of Russian interference in the 2016 vote through to the election earlier this month.

He won praise from across the political spectrum as CISA co-ordinated federal state and local efforts to defend electoral systems from foreign or domestic interference.

In recent days, Mr Krebs has repeatedly pushed back against false claims that the election was tainted and rejected claims of voter fraud. 

Earlier on Tuesday, he tweeted report citing 59 election security experts saying there is no credible evidence of computer fraud in the 2020 election outcome.

Mr Krebs replied to the sacking from his personal Twitter account, saying: ‘Honored to serve. We did it right. Defend Today, Secure Tomorrow.’

He closed with the phrase ‘Protect 2020,’ which had been his agency’s slogan ahead of the election.

Reuters reported last week that Mr Krebs had told associates he expected to be fired.

But he was not given notice of Trump’s plan to fire him, according to a person familiar with the matter, and learned of the decision through Twitter.

Matthew Travis, Mr Krebs’ deputy and the number two at the agency, resigned on Tuesday night, while CISA Executive Director Brandon Wales is expected to take over on Wednesday. 

Senator Ben Sasse, who has been a Trump critic, was among the first Republicans to push back against the decision.

‘Chris Krebs did a really good job as state election officials all across the nation will tell you and he obviously should not be fired’, he said.

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