Skip to main content

Sign up for our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values. Direct to your inbox.

Sens. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) talk as they walk to the Senate Democrats' caucus lunch on Thursday, July 11, 2013.

Sens. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) talk as they walk to the Senate Democrats' caucus lunch on Thursday, July 11, 2013. (Photo: Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

'Serial IG Purges' by Trump Fuel Dems' Call for Anti-Corruption Provisions in Next Covid Package

"There must be expanded transparency about who is receiving bailout funds and how that money is being used."

Andrea Germanos

Sen. Richard Blumenthal pointed on Sunday to President Donald Trump's intention to oust another inspector general—this time of a Department of Health and Human Services watchdog—to bolster his call for the next coronavirus legislative relief package to include measures to "forestall fraud and favoritism."

Blumenthal (D-Conn.), along with Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and Reps. John Sarbanes (D-Md.) and Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.), unveiled the details of their proposal to congressional leadership on Friday, urging them to "include strong oversight, accountability, and anti-corruption provisions in any upcoming legislation to provide economic aid, relief, recovery, or stimulus in response to COVID-19 in order to safeguard taxpayer funds and to bolster Americans' faith in government to respond to this crisis."

Blumenthal also gave a rundown of the provisions Saturday on Twitter:

"President Donald Trump has made clear that he is putting himself and his buddies first during this global pandemic—and he will actively undermine independent oversight," Warren said in a statement Friday.

"The next relief package must include our provisions to empower inspectors general, prohibit conflicts of interest, and strengthen oversight and enforcement, and to stop any government-sanctioned profiteering and corruption," said Warren. "The American people need to trust their government is on their side, especially now."

Jayapal echoed those concerns, calling for "aggressive oversight measures in future relief packages to ensure economic aid is delivered to struggling families and businesses in need, keep this president accountable, and prevent him and his administration from misusing and misallocating taxpayer dollars."

The Democrats' call drew praise from government watchdog group Project on Government Oversight (POGO).

"These proposals demonstrate a strong commitment to real oversight and anti-corruption," the group said Friday.

"While the problems these reforms aim to address have been around for decades," POGO added, "they're under the spotlight as we contend with Covid-19."


Our work is licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). Feel free to republish and share widely.

We've had enough. The 1% own and operate the corporate media. They are doing everything they can to defend the status quo, squash dissent and protect the wealthy and the powerful. The Common Dreams media model is different. We cover the news that matters to the 99%. Our mission? To inform. To inspire. To ignite change for the common good. How? Nonprofit. Independent. Reader-supported. Free to read. Free to republish. Free to share. With no advertising. No paywalls. No selling of your data. Thousands of small donations fund our newsroom and allow us to continue publishing. Can you chip in? We can't do it without you. Thank you.

'On Her Way Home': WNBA Star Brittney Griner Freed in US-Russia Prisoner Swap

"Moments ago I spoke to Brittney Griner," said U.S. President Joe Biden. "She is safe. She is on a plane."

Jessica Corbett ·


Historic Offshore Wind Lease Sale in California Gets Over $750 Million in Winning Bids

"If we build on today's forward momentum, the United States can dramatically reduce its global warming emissions and become a global leader in renewable energy technologies like deep-water offshore wind."

Brett Wilkins ·


Solidarity Fund Up and Running for Designer Behind Iconic Bernie Sanders Posters

Tyler Evans "has dedicated his life to the progressive movement," says the GoFundMe created for the hospitalized designer. "Now it's our time to have Tyler's back when he and his family need it most."

Jessica Corbett ·


Journalism Defenders Push for Passage of 'Game-Changing' PRESS Act

"The PRESS Act is the most important free press legislation in modern times because it would finally stop the government from spying on journalists and threatening them with arrest for doing their jobs," explained one advocate.

Brett Wilkins ·


New York Times Union Workers Planning Dec. 8 Walkout, Rally Over Pay

"Our collective action is working: Management backed off its attempt to kill our pension and agreed to expand fertility benefits," the union said of ongoing talks. "But management still barely budged on some of our most important priorities."

Jessica Corbett ·

Common Dreams Logo