Following Preet Bharara's announcement Saturday that he was "fired" from his position as the most prominent U.S. attorney in the nation, condemnation over his dismissal came quickly from Democrat -- and even some Republican -- officials.
"Today, I was fired from my position as U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York," Bharara said in a statement that was released on Saturday. "Serving my country as U.S. attorney here for the past seven years will forever be the greatest honor of my professional life, no matter what else I do or how long I live."
Bharara's announcement came a day after the Department of Justice asked all U.S. attorneys except two remaining as holdovers from the Obama administration to step down.
Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, who frequently battled with Trump online on behalf of Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign, fired off a storm of tweets today questioning the motives of the president in removing Bharara from his post.
".@realDonaldTrump talked a big game about getting corruption out of gov. But he wants a bunch of tame prosecutors who won’t investigate him," Warren wrote. "Weeks ago, @realDonaldTrump promised to keep Preet Bharara as the top federal prosecutor in Manhattan. Yesterday, Preet was fired. Why?"
Warren went on to praise Bharara as "a fearless prosecutor who stands up to both parties [and] Wall Street," and noted similarities between this instance and the dismissal of acting Attorney General Sally Yates, suggesting that the president preferred "a loyalist" like Jeff Sessions.
"You can't fire the rule of law, @realDonaldTrump. You can't shut down ongoing investigations by career prosecutors," Warren concluded.
You can't fire the rule of law, @realDonaldTrump. You can't shut down ongoing investigations by career prosecutors.— Elizabeth Warren (@SenWarren) March 12, 2017
New York Attorney General Eric T. Scheiderman blasted the Trump administration in a statement, and said Bharara "served with honor and distinction."
"President Trump’s abrupt and unexplained decision to summarily remove over 40 U.S. Attorneys has once again caused chaos in the federal government and led to questions about whether the Justice Department's vital and non-partisan work will continue under Attorney General Sessions, as it must," Schneiderman said.
Preet Bharara was an excellent US attorney. Took on Wall St, public corruption & terrorists. He’ll be sorely missed.— Chuck Schumer (@SenSchumer) March 11, 2017
Other elected officials -- primarily from New York State -- took to Twitter, as well, and echoed the aforementioned sentiments:
New York State Sen. Todd Kaminsky (Democrat)
Rep. Hakeem Jeffries (D-New York)
Trump just fired prosecutor renowned for public corruption cases. So much for the rule of law. Sad! https://t.co/Gf3sCQzGFC— Hakeem Jeffries (@RepJeffries) March 11, 2017
New York State Assemblyman Steve McLaughlin (Republican)
New York State Assembly Leader Brian Kolb (Republican)
Good for Preet, he is doing the job he was appointed to do! https://t.co/4WqOgRfZht— Brian Kolb (@GOPLdrBrianKolb) March 11, 2017
Former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean (Democrat)
You have been a great and fearless public servant and those are in very short supply. You will be called upon again https://t.co/Rq1va0dXFI— Howard Dean (@GovHowardDean) March 11, 2017
Former Rep. Steve Israel (D-New York)
Hollywood took notice too. The Showtime series "Billions" is loosely based on Bharara's activities and his legal battles with hedge fund manager Steve Cohen. The show's creators, Brian Koppelman and David Levien, tweeted that Bharara may find employment with them.
Koppleman tweeted, "You're a great man, Preet. An inspiration. Can't wait to see what's next. Tech advisor + cameo???"
You're a great man, Preet. An inspiration. Can't wait to see what's next.
Tech advisor + cameo??? https://t.co/iiqh2JVSUW— Brian Koppelman (@briankoppelman) March 11, 2017
And Levien tweeted, "Writing staff?"