US government ethics chief resigns, with parting shot at POTUS – Ben Jacobs Last modified on Thursday 6 July 2017 18.11 EDT


Walter Shaub, head of the independent Office of Government Ethics, pens resignation letter with reminder: ‘Public service is a public trust’

Walter Shaub has announced his resignation as head of the Office of Government Ethics.
Walter Shaub has announced his resignation as head of the Office of Government Ethics. Photograph: J Scott Applewhite/AP

The top ethics watchdog in the federal government announced his resignation on Thursday, taking a parting shot at Donald Trump as he did so.

Walter Shaub, head of the independent Office of Government Ethics (OGE), said in his resignation letter to Trump that he would step down in mid-July, six months before the end of his term, in order to take a job at the Campaign Legal Center, a not-for-profit good-government group.

Leading the OGE had been “the great privilege and honor of my career”, he wrote.

In a separate statement from the center, Shaub said: “In working with the current administration, it has become clear to me that we need improvements to the existing ethics program. I look forward to working toward that aim at Campaign Legal Center, as well as working on ethics reforms at all levels of government.”

Shaub is a longtime federal bureaucrat who was appointed to the OGE by Barack Obama in 2013 and confirmed by a voice vote in the US Senate.

Since Trump’s victory in the 2016 election, Shaub has strongly criticized the president over his failure to divest from his business holdings, saying he was “extremely troubled” that Trump simply turned over his investments to his two oldest sons.

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