We all want a return to normalcy. This just wasn’t the normal we had in mind. “President Donald Trump has removed State Department Inspector General Steve Linick and replaced him with an ally of Vice President Mike Pence — the latest in a series of moves against independent government watchdogs in recent months.” Politico: Trump ousts State Department watchdog. Rep. Eliot L. Engel, chairman of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs: “I have learned that the Office of the Inspector General had opened an investigation into Secretary Pompeo. Mr. Linick’s firing amid such a probe strongly suggests that this is an unlawful act of retaliation.”

+ The move came late on a Friday night. It turns out the guy most famous for saying, “You’re fired!” in primetime likes to do his real life dirty work after hours. WaPo: Trump’s slow-moving Friday night massacre of inspectors general. “It’s the third time in six weeks that such a move has been announced on a Friday night, with each inspector general having done something to pretty obviously alienate Trump. The unprecedented spate of removals has reinforced how Trump is rather obviously seeking to undermine independent oversight of his administration — and the timing of each of them only reinforces that.” Some of the Friday night victims dared to tell the truth about the coronavirus. (There’s a certain sad irony to utilizing the old school strategy of issuing damaging news on Friday nights. What difference does it make at this point? It’s not like we’re out.)