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Trump Fires Agency Head Who Vouched for Vote Security

President says statement defending election's integrity was 'highly inaccurate'
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Nov 17, 2020 7:41 PM CST

(Newser) – President Trump has fired the director of the federal agency that vouched for the reliability of the 2020 election. Trump fired Christopher Krebs in a tweet, saying his recent statement defending the security of the election was "highly inaccurate." The firing of Krebs, a Trump appointee and director of the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, comes as Trump is refusing to recognize the victory of Democratic President-elect Joe Biden and removing high-level officials seen as insufficiently loyal, the AP reports. Krebs, a former Microsoft executive, ran the agency, known as CISA, from its creation in the wake of Russian interference with the 2016 election through the November election. After the agency said last week that the 2020 election was "the most secure in US history," sources said Krebs had said he expected to be fired.

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Krebs won bipartisan praise as CISA coordinated federal state and local efforts to defend electoral systems from foreign or domestic interference. In recent days, Krebs has repeatedly pushed back against false claims that the election was tainted. Earlier Tuesday, he tweeted out a report citing 59 election security experts saying there is no credible evidence of computer fraud in the 2020 election outcome. Trump fired back on Twitter later in the day. He repeated unsubstantiated claims about the vote and wrote "effective immediately, Chris Krebs has been terminated as Director of the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency." Krebs, from his personal Twitter account, responded: "Honored to serve. We did it right. Defend Today, Secure Tomrorow [sic]." He added the hashtag #Protect2020.

(Read more Election 2020 stories.)

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