Inspectors general are executive branch officers who serve at the pleasure of the president. But they are also vital watchdogs tasked with ensure both the efficient and the legal operation of the departments they oversee. As inspectors general may often discover and expose politically embarrassing mistakes or even criminal activity, they are often in conflict with the administrations they serve. Nonetheless, their independence is a vital element of our system of checks and balances.
What is the best method of protecting inspectors general from political interference? How can these protections be implemented without impermissible intruding on presidential authority?