by Sonam Seth/John Haltiwanger, Business InsiderNovember 2018

The White House considered extraditing one of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s top enemies to get Ankara to back off the investigation into the murder of the journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

NBC News reported that the White House was looking for legal ways to boot out Fethullah Gulen — an exiled Turkish cleric whom Erdogan accuses of orchestrating a failed coup against him in 2016 — in exchange for Turkey easing pressure on the Saudi government, which is responsible for Khashoggi’s killing.

Gulen is a legal U.S. resident and a green-card holder who’s been living in Pennsylvania since the late 1990s.

When the White House first floated the idea of extraditing Gulen, career officials at top federal agencies thought it was a joke but became “furious” when they learned it was a serious request, according to NBC News.

Knowingly tossing aside the right of American citizens in exchange for political clout is classic authoritarian behavior.

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