Trump is Still Mad at Jeff Sessions for Recusing Himself From Russia
The headline on some level even seems to be good news.
“Trump Grows Discontented With Attorney General Jeff Sessions.”
“The discontent was on display on Monday in a series of stark early-morning postings on Twitter in which the president faulted his own Justice Department for its defense of his travel ban on visitors from certain predominantly Muslim countries. Mr. Trump accused Mr. Sessions’s department of devising a “politically correct” version of the ban — as if the president had nothing to do with it.”
After all, Sessions is an unreconstructed segregationist who has defended the KKK and was turned down by Congress in the 1980s for even being a federal judge-much less leading the entire DOJ-due to his clear racism.
He also seems to think civil liberties is some commie conspiracy and wants to put people in jail for smoking a joint.
So the question is why is Sessions in trouble? For one of the few things he did right:
“In private, the president’s exasperation has been even sharper. He has intermittently fumed for months over Mr. Sessions’s decision to recuse himself from the investigation into Russian meddling in last year’s election, according to people close to Mr. Trump who insisted on anonymity to describe internal conversations. In Mr. Trump’s view, they said, it was that recusal that eventually led to the appointment of a special counsel who took over the investigation.”
As someone on MSNBC’s Halle Jackson noted, it’s not so likely Sessions is actually in trouble. The favorite for being next to leave Trump WH for now seems to be Reince Priebus.
Of course, if anyone is fired then the tell all book will probably be soon to follow. I think the Reince Priebus version would be some good reading.
As for Trump’s lashing out at Sessions, as Greg Sargent notes, it shows something deep about Trump’s-lack of-leadership style.
“Trump appears worryingly unable to contemplate his own role in bringing about the special counsel. The firing of FBI director James Comey led to reports that Trump allegedly demanded Comey’s loyalty and to Trump’s admission he fired Comey over the Russia probe. That revealed the Justice Department’s memo providing Trump his initial rationale for the firing (Comey’s handling of the Hillary Clinton probe) was bogus. Which led to the special counsel.”
“Beyond this, though, note this: Trump’s seething anger at Sessions is disconcertingly similar to the anger that led him to fire Comey. As the Times previously reported, Trump privately “burned” as he watched Comey testify to Congress about Russia’s efforts to tip the election to Trump, and was “particularly irked” when Comey conceded his own intervention, via a letter about Clinton’s emails, may have influenced the outcome, which Trump “took to demean his own role in history.” The Post added that Trump was “infuriated” at the FBI’s failure to investigate and stop leaks, which have led to news accounts detailing what the Russia probe was finding.”
“Both Comey and Sessions enraged Trump because in some manner or other, they failed to show a level of loyalty to Trump that would have trumped (as it were) legitimate processes. Comey kept publicly validating the Russia investigation (which Trump dismisses as nothing but Fake News) and would not make it disappear by stopping leaks about it. Sessions recused himself to display (nominal) independence, which Trump somehow interpreted as a lapse into weakness that led to the special counsel, further affirming the probe’s weightiness.”
So Trump’s real beef is he wanted Sessions to clamp down on Russia for him.
“Students of authoritarianism see a pattern taking shape.”
Indeed. What’s amazing is that Trump got out of the Paris Accord last week less to please Steven Bannon and the base than because he was mad at Macron for The Handshake which left him ‘bewildered.’
Don’t get me wrong-on the facts it was a terrible decision. But it’s even worse that this was done to setttle personal pique.
Meanwhile, getting out of the Accord seems to have led his numbers to tank. At this point more want him to be impeached then approve of his job as President.
P.S. As we saw in my poll out last week, the long awaited poll results are in, and right now I’m just 11 points down vs. Peter King (GOP-NY-District 2). And the voters don’t even know who I am yet.
There is nothing more important in getting answers to Trump-Russia collusion than a Democratic House in 2019. Please donate to help me in my part of the effort to fight for a Dem House.
Thank you. We must have a Dem House. And so, we will.