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caption: Department of Homeland Security Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency Director Christopher Krebs seen on Capitol Hill last year.
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Department of Homeland Security Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency Director Christopher Krebs seen on Capitol Hill last year.
Credit: AP

Trump Fires CISA Director Chris Krebs, Who Corrected Voter Fraud Disinformation

Christopher Krebs, the Department of Homeland Security director who had spearheaded a campaign to counter rumors about voter fraud, has been fired, President Trump tweeted on Tuesday.

Updated at 7:48 p.m. ET

Trump, in two misleading tweets about the security of the U.S. election, said Krebs' termination was "effective immediately."

The tweets, from Trump's verified Twitter account, were flagged by the social media platform for promoting misinformation.

In response, Krebs tweeted "Honored to serve. We did it right. Defend Today, Secure Tomorrow."

Trump lost the election to President-elect Joe Biden, in both the popular and electoral vote. Trump had for weeks prior to the election erroneously railed against mail-in voting as being ripe for fraud. The president had encouraged his supporters to vote in person on Nov. 3 — he later complained about the number of absentee ballots that supported his opponent.

Krebs' firing came after his agency, the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, last week released a statement calling the 2020 election "the most secure in American history."

It added, in boldface, that "there is no evidence that any voting system deleted or lost votes, changed votes, or was in any way compromised."

The CISA campaign, led by Krebs, was originally intended to target foreign interference. However, as the president continued to repeat dangerously misleading information about the security of the election, the agency's focus turned to rebutting many of the rumors and baseless allegations of widespread voter fraud that Trump had promoted from the White House.

A DHS official who has worked with Krebs but spoke on background for fear of retaliation last week told NPR that Krebs being fired would "rock CISA."

"Chris has earned the trust of staff all across the agency," the official said. "He's easily been the most competent and able of any political appointee I've worked with." [Copyright 2020 NPR]