Having reminded the media who the president is when he kicked CNN’s Jim Acosta in the seat of the pants, President Trump likewise reminded the Democrats when he demanded and received the resignation of Attorney General Jeff Sessions.
The ensuing Trump Derangement Seizure among Democrats was nearly, but not quite, as entertaining as the media’s TDS.
Of course, Sessions’ departure is a “constitutional crisis,” and woe betide his temporary replacement if he breathes a word about touching the “Russia probe” that Special Counsel Robert Mueller is running.
Sessions quit the job after he received the order from White House Chief of Staff John Kelly, the Washington Post reported. “Sessions received a phone call Wednesday morning from White House Chief of Staff John F. Kelly — before the president held a news conference to discuss the results of the midterm elections — telling him the president wanted Sessions to resign.”
Sessions’ resigned “at your request,” he wrote, referring to Trump. He listed a number of accomplishments, including prosecuting the “largest number of violent offenders and firearm defendants in our country's history.” DOJ, he wrote, also fought transnational gangs, “did our part to restore immigration enforcement”, and “targeted the opioid epidemic.”
Filling in for Sessions is his top deputy, Matthew Whitaker, whom, the New York Times shouted in a headline, is a Trump “loyalist,” a subtle suggestion that Trump, unlike every other president, should appoint someone who isn’t a “loyalist.”
Why he would do such a stupid thing the Times did not explain, but at any rate Whitaker the “loyalist” is suspect because he wrote an op-ed for CNN that defended the president and suggested, as the headline put it, the Mueller Russia probe had “gone too far.”
That’s because the probe might included “possible financial crimes” unrelated to the 2016 election.
Wrote Whitaker, “It does not take a lawyer or even a former federal prosecutor like myself to conclude that investigating Donald Trump's finances or his family's finances falls completely outside of the realm of his 2016 campaign and allegations that the campaign coordinated with the Russian government or anyone else. That goes beyond the scope of the appointment of the special counsel.”
Thus, Whitaker concluded, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, who appointed Mueller, must confine his fishing trip to its clearly outlined territorial waters.
Democrats: It’s a Crisis!
Predictably, Democrats began weeping and gnashing their teeth.
Representative Nancy Pelosi, the California leftist who thinks she will be elected speaker of the house, tweeted that “It is impossible to read Attorney General Sessions’ firing as anything other than another blatant attempt by @realDonaldTrump to undermine & end Special Counsel Mueller’s investigation.”
New York’s Jerry Nadler, who will be chairman of the House Judiciary Committee come January, said the removal of Sessions “is a clear pattern of interference from President Donald Trump in the work of the Department of Justice and the ongoing criminal investigation being conducted by Special Counsel Robert Mueller.”
Nadler wrote that he is ordering “key officials demanding that they preserve all relevant documents related to this action to make sure that the investigation and any evidence remains safe from improper interference or destruction.”
Senator Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y) warned of a “constitutional crisis if this were a prelude to ending or greatly limiting the Mueller investigation.” Of Whitaker’s authority over the Mueller snipe hunt, Schumer tweeted that the acting attorney general “should recuse himself from its oversight for the duration of his time.”
Apparently forgetting the unpunished crimes of the Kennedys and Clintons, Senator Mark Warner huffed that “no one is above the law” and that Trump better not “impede, obstruct or end the Mueller investigation.”
But Whitaker need not recuse himself from overseeing the Mueller probe because that’s his job. “There’s no legal conflict,” a legal ethicist told the Post. “If he were a judge, the public comment could require recusal because it would create a question about his impartiality in ruling. But as acting AG, he’s a policymaker and is expected to have a policy position on how DOJ should deploy its resources and define the scope of Mueller’s work, just as Rosenstein has been doing.”
In March 2017, the same Democrats now protesting Sessions’ resignation demanded that Sessions resign.