Patterico's Pontifications

11/7/2018

At Trump’s Request: Resignation of Attorney General Jeff Sessions

Filed under: General — Dana @ 7:27 pm

[guest post by Dana]

Here is the pertinent part of Sessions’ resignation letter:

Dear Mr. President,

At your request, I am submitting my resignation.

Easy to read between the lines here: Either you do it, or I’ll do it for you.

President Trump tweeted about Sessions’ exit, but did not discuss it at today’s press conference:

Untitled

Allahpundit fills in some details about Whitaker:

A former U.S. Attorney, Whitaker ended up becoming Sessions’s chief of staff at the DOJ after that op-ed was published. Now suddenly he’s in a position to give Mueller the order that he demanded Rosenstein give him last year. The NYT and WaPo noted within the past few months that he and Trump had hit it off and that POTUS was eyeing him as a potential solution, if only short-term, to his Sessions problem. Now that he’s assured of Republican gains in the Senate, he doesn’t really have a “Sessions problem” anymore; he can get a handpicked successor confirmed, probably, an outcome that wouldn’t have been possible if the blue wave really had crashed into the battlegrounds last night.

Of course, Democrats have new leverage after last night too. Jeff Sessions’s testimony before the House next year will be amazing. And if Whitaker does ride herd on Mueller, don’t be surprised if they move to impeach him. Impeachment will fail in the Senate but the point for Dems wouldn’t be to remove him, just to delegitimize him and his oversight of the Russiagate probe.

We didn’t have to wait long for Phase Two of the Trump era to begin.

Interestingly:

Is Whitaker the new head of the Russiagate probe? The Times story I linked above addressed a scenario in which Rosenstein, not Sessions, might be fired and Whitaker would be installed as acting deputy AG. In that case, noted the Times, “complex” Justice Department rules would make Solicitor General Noel Francisco the new man in charge of the Russiagate investigation.

As the acting deputy attorney general, Mr. Whitaker would oversee the nation’s federal prosecutors, including the investigations of Mr. Trump’s former personal lawyer, Michael D. Cohen, the Trump Organization and the business run by the father of Mr. Kushner.

The Russia investigation would be overseen by the solicitor general, Noel J. Francisco. But Mr. Whitaker could have visibility into the special counsel’s work. Officials in the deputy attorney general’s office have met regularly with Mr. Mueller’s team.

Whitaker is now the top dog in the department, not the deputy, albeit on an interim basis. Doesn’t that mean he leapfrogs everyone, including Francisco, to be Mueller’s new boss?

(I lack both the time and energy to go into any depth regarding Sessions, Mueller, investigation, etc. so please do read all of Allahpundit’s post because it raises some rather interesting possibilities…)

(Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.)

–Dana

50 Responses to “At Trump’s Request: Resignation of Attorney General Jeff Sessions”

  1. Hello.

    Dana (023079)

  2. sleazy bob mueller and his phony russia collusion hoax aren’t gonna suddenly become creditable just cause there’s a new AG

    you have to remember Jeffy wasn’t actually in charge of anything

    he had literally nothing to do with running the Justice Department

    poor man (slobbering racist)

    but it’ll be nice to have a real Attorney General for a change

    all the other presidents got to have one you know

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  3. happyfeet (28a91b) — 11/7/2018 @ 7:44 pm

    Why does President Trump appoint such terrible evil people to such important jobs?

    Dave (9664fc)

  4. Jeffy’s much more cowardly than evil i think

    he couldn’t stand up for himself

    and he couldn’t stand up to the sleazy dirty FBI and their collusion hoax

    so he’s leaving the DOJ even more tainted than he found it

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  5. Rather curious Trump didn’t discuss Sessions’ exit today but instead made sure the Acosta squabble continued on into the night after the news cycle ended.

    Dana (023079)

  6. “Why does President Trump appoint such terrible evil people to such important jobs?”
    Dave (9664fc) — 11/7/2018 @ 7:48 pm

    Why bring Kavanaugh into this?

    Munroe (cd8bd5)

  7. It happened after the press conference, remember the press wasnt interested in issues just whatever the designated narrative was : have you been humiliated yet,

    Narciso (de974d)

  8. Sessions’ permanent replacement will need to be either be a crook or a fool. Or ideally, both.

    Any guesses who it might be?

    Roy Moore?

    Joe Arpaio?

    Rudy?

    Dave (9664fc)

  9. Fat Boy Christie?

    urbanleftbehind (22b95a)

  10. Back in 2017, Whitaker … told CNN’s Don Lemon that he could see a scenario where Sessions is replaced with an attorney general who “reduces (Mueller’s) budget so low that his investigation grinds to almost a halt.”

    https://www.cnn.com/2018/11/07/politics/matthew-whitaker-attorney-general-mueller-special-counsel-probe/index.html

    Tillman (61f3c8)

  11. … he and Trump had hit it off …

    Heh, I guess they did! Whitaker was just the brown-noser for the job.

    Tillman (61f3c8)

  12. Sessions got rickrolled by the Dems in Congress over supposed inconsistencies in his testimony over contacts with Russia’s Ambassador. They used the old “appearance of a conflict of interest” rather than an actual conflict of interest. I liked Sessions, he was a stand up guy who I’m sure got tired of the frustrated sniping from the WH. Whitaker seems like a decent, honorable guy, it’ll be interesting to see if he turns into a political pitbull like Holder and Lynn did or not. Or whomever Trump plans to nominate to take over; I don’t think Christie will want the position. Klobach would be a controversial choice, but he’s always been a law and order type of guy.

    Cygnusanalogman (9e0e0f)

  13. @ Dave – Roy Moore is such a joke even the southern Republicans wouldn’t vote for him. Arpaio and Rudy would have to immediately recuse themselves because one represents him personally and one got pardoned. Fat chance of that happening. Christie wants to make media money so I doubt seeing him back in federal government just yet. Booker is up for re-election in 2020; I seem to recall they recently changed the law in NJ to allow him to run for both President and Senate at the same time. Perhaps Christie will challenge him there?

    Cygnusanalogman (9e0e0f)

  14. Ah you weren’t here then, Christie made Booker’s seat possible, back in 2013.

    Narciso (de974d)

  15. Since Mr. Whitaker has already made his views known about the Mueller probe–and it’s unlikely that Trump was not aware of those opinions–then this can’t be anything but a backdoor attempt by Trump to obstruct a legitimate investigation. Ms. Bertrand:

    David Laufman, a former high-ranking DOJ official who oversaw parts of the Russia investigation in his role as chief of the Counterintelligence and Export Control Section, said Trump’s “installation of a political loyalist who previously questioned the merits of the special counsel investigation must be viewed precisely for what it is: a preliminary assault on the special counsel’s latitude to complete his essential work and by extension on the rule of law.”

    Given Mr. Whitaker’s role in a scam company in Florida, he’ll blend perfectly into Trump’s swamp-filling culture, especially if he engages in the periodic kissing of Trump’s fat, white ass.

    Paul Montagu (4575b4)

  16. Liberal rino hating Joe diGeniva works for me.

    mg (9e54f8)

  17. Arpaio and Rudy would have to immediately recuse themselves

    Somebody hasn’t been paying attention… :)

    Conflicts of interest are a feature, not a bug, in this administration. The Dear Leader has spoken!

    Dave (9664fc)

  18. @ Narciso – meh, there hasn’t been a viable Republican candidate for Senator in Jersey since the 60’s. Monkeying around with the schedule wasn’t going to change that.

    @ Dave – you could say the same about the previous administration, but when you have the MBM fluffing the Emperor with no clothes and his Choom Gang, does it even register in voters’ minds?

    CygnusAnalogMan (9c66ec)

  19. Valuable advice…

    “So live for the simple things and joys, put your faith in the Lord, and do whatever you can to piss off a Leftist at least once a day.”

    —- J.J. Sefton

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  20. Rather curious Trump didn’t discuss Sessions’ exit today but instead made sure the Acosta squabble continued on into the night after the news cycle ended.

    the only relevance Sessions has to anything is his cowardly inability to reign in dirty Bob Mueeller and the sleazy corrupt men and women of the lawless skeezy FBI

    and the CNN Jake Tapper fake newstrash don’t do any russia collusion hoax stories anymore cause it’s too obviously phony now

    everybody knows the dirty-ass men and women of the corrupt and useless FBI made it all up

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  21. Colonel – if there was a rec button available on this blog, i’d be tapping that all day long for your comment 😛

    CygnusAnalogMan (9c66ec)

  22. I know, I know, I know! Trump should appoint Jim Comey Attorney General!

    nk (dbc370)

  23. Laufman atty for Monica McLean, yes he’s not biased he was justice Intel deep in the atrzok swamp

    Back in 2013 there was a real conservative up for that seat, no money went to him.

    Narciso (c50817)

  24. Pure narcissism…

    “The conduct of a handful of so-called reporters during President Trump’s news conference was disgraceful beyond measure. This is not journalism, this is narcissism.

    Naturally, the boorish Jim Acosta of CNN was the instigator. As is his habit, Acosta doesn’t ask questions — he makes accusations and argues. Almost daily, he does it with the press secretary; Wednesday, he did it with the president.

    “I want to challenge you,” Acosta began after Trump called on him. Trump realized he’d made a mistake, murmuring, “Here we go,” and Acosta didn’t disappoint.

    He insisted that despite the president’s use of the word “invasion,” the caravan of Central American migrants “is not an invasion.”

    He adopted a lecturing, I-know-best tone to declare that “they’re hundreds and hundreds of miles away; that’s not an invasion.”

    Trump’s response should not have been necessary: “Honestly, I think you should let me run the country, you run CNN.”

    https://nypost.com/2018/11/07/jim-acosta-violated-one-of-the-oldest-rules-of-journalism/

    Colonel Haiku (f2bc98)

  25. Leslie cockburn Jurassic moonbat lost those district were almost all drawn up by mcawfuls election dept, quelled surprise.

    Narciso (c50817)

  26. #5 Rather curious Trump didn’t discuss Sessions’ exit today but instead made sure the Acosta squabble continued on into the night after the news cycle ended.

    Dana (023079) — 11/7/2018 @ 8:13 pm

    Not really… it’s the gift that keeps on giving.

    The press keeps doing this, where they make it about them rather focusing on the *BIG STORY*. Its amazing the press doesn’t realize how much damage they can do towards Trump’s agenda if they report in a factual, neutral basis. “Just the facts ma’am”.

    Instead, much of the press is in “Op-Ed Punditry™” mode…and it’s feeding the whole #FakeNews narrative that is working for Trump.

    whembly (b9d411)

  27. “Since Mr. Whitaker has already made his views known about the Mueller probe–and it’s unlikely that Trump was not aware of those opinions–then this can’t be anything but a backdoor attempt by Trump to obstruct a legitimate investigation.”
    Paul Montagu (4575b4) — 11/7/2018 @ 9:40 pm

    Since Mueller’s decades long cozy relationship with Comey was well known, his appointment as SC can’t be anything but a backdoor attempt by Rosenstein to overturn the 2016 election.

    Munroe (01ccca)

  28. …his appointment as SC can’t be anything but a backdoor attempt by Rosenstein to overturn the 2016 election.

    That’s a nice fantasy.

    Paul Montagu (4575b4)

  29. Your logic. Your fantasy.

    Munroe (c9a127)

  30. @ Paul Montagu – given how Rosenstein allegedly joked about wearing a wire to record Trump in order to convince members of his Cabinet to invoke the 25th Amendment, it’s not far off. Also considering he’s done everything in his power to slow-walk or delay release of embarrassing documents that would show how politicized DOJ/FBI became under Comey and Flynn.

    CygnusAnalogMan (9c66ec)

  31. mueller’s not just dirty he used to be in the fbi AND the us military

    you don’t get much scummier than that

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  32. Acosta is building his brand as a divider. I’m glad his credential was suspended, but they need to just cancel it.

    Dustin (6d7686)

  33. The irony is that Rosy, Comey and Mueller have all been Republicans longer than Trump has, and also ironic that it was Comey who played a role in undermining the Hillary campaign with not one but two public statements that likely decreased her chances of winning, and both statements occurred in the heat of a 2016 election season. Instead of giving Comey a loyalty test, Trump should have just thanked him and left it at that, and then there would’ve been no Mueller to bash in the first place.

    Paul Montagu (4575b4)

  34. Trump should have fired Comey during the transition. He knew, knew!, that Comey was trying to screw him over with the fake Russian dossier. You don’t take a slimy snake like that into your bosom or into your administration.

    nk (dbc370)

  35. Acosta is building his brand as a divider.

    that’s what people are hoping but it’s not the case i don’t think Mr. Dustin

    he’s jacking with the entire CNN Jake Tapper fake news brand across every medium

    and it’s not just CNN

    all the whole fake news from NPR to Politico to Fox are getting Acosta stank all over them

    faster please

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  36. In my opinion, Comey made those statements as a CYA. He knew DOJ would never prosecute Clinton for her email shenanigans because she was the chosen one and any prosecution would expose the fact that Obama was well aware of Hillary’s email server because he communicated with her on her server using an alias. That was a footnote in the IG report that got ignored by the fluffing MBM. He didn’t want to be left holding the bag or get thrown under the bus by Obama’s DOJ. He ended up pissing off both Republicans and Democrats because of that. Nice job, Comey! He’s nothing but a self-serving dirtbag, in my opinion.

    CygnusAnalogMan (9c66ec)

  37. And here’s another irony. For all the complaints from conservatives that Obama hired political hacks like Holder and Tarmac Lynch to run DOJ, Trump just elevated a political hack to run DOJ.

    Paul Montagu (4575b4)

  38. like Eric Holder and chunky-butt Loretta weren’t hacky hacky hacks

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  39. “and also ironic that it was Comey who played a role in undermining the Hillary campaign with not one but two public statements that likely decreased her chances of winning,”
    Paul Montagu (4575b4) — 11/8/2018 @ 6:51 am

    Nice Try.

    As the alternative was an indictment, the statements were indeed a campaign gift — to Hillary.

    Munroe (636d60)

  40. As the alternative was an indictment, the statements were indeed a campaign gift — to Hillary.

    That’s bad math, or logic, because it’s a matter of degree, not either-or. Indicting Hillary obviously would have hurt her campaign. Two public statements against Hillary by Comey actually did hurt her campaign. Several liberals I argued with blame Comey above all else for Hillary’s losing. Her numbers did decline after the Comey letter to Congress was made public, but it wasn’t Comey who told her not to go to Wisconsin.

    Paul Montagu (4575b4)

  41. How could he have done so if Sally Yates was in the loop, were not using the time stone here.

    Narciso (4eae81)

  42. Only democratic officials preferably those already involved in this witchhunt from the FISA warrant from the beginning gotcha.

    Narciso (4eae81)

  43. Or with the uranium one debacle, I know what does that matter.

    Narciso (4eae81)

  44. Too bad, but Sessions brought it on himself. He seemed more interested in being “non-political” and not disappointing Diane Feinstein than in helping Trump.

    The AG is the President’s Man. He’s part of his cabinet. He’s not some independent agent.

    But anyway, Sessions decided to recuse himself over Russia and proved himself super-ethical. Bully for him. Now, he can look for another job.

    rcocean (1a839e)

  45. @ Paul Montagu – Comey made the first statement because, like I said, he knew there was no way Obama’s corrupt DOJ would ever prosecute Clinton. He wanted to remain as FBI director, but he also didn’t want to be made the sacrificial offering Clinton would make if she won the election. By saying she was sloppy, but didn’t engage in criminal behavior, he gave her a way out. He pissed her off because she probably expected a full exoneration. Look at it this way; Bill got a slap on the wrist for lying under oath during his deposition and obstructing justice by encouraging Monica to lie in the Paula Jones civil suit. Comey probably thought that a public statement calling her sloppy, but not criminal, would allow her to save face and claim she did nothing wrong and allow her and the MBM to shove the whole mess under the carpet. The second statement and reopening the investigation was done to cover his ass. Strzok and the rest of the FBI management team knew Weiner’s laptop contained emails from the server for almost two months and sat on it till agents from New York bitched. He knew that if that info came out after the election and she had won, he’d be the first one on the sacrificial altar. That was him, covering his ass so he could claim he didnt partake in a coverup.

    CygnusAnalogMan (9c66ec)

  46. Re: “Easy to read between the lines here: Either you do it, or I’ll do it for you.”

    Can you name anyone who our president has fired face to face? If that has happened, I must have missed it.

    John B Boddie (41beaf)

  47. he fires lots of people face to face it’s not like he doesn’t fire a lot of people face to face just cause i can’t think of any

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  48. . Now that he’s assured of Republican gains in the Senate, he doesn’t really have a “Sessions problem” anymore; he can get a handpicked successor confirmed,

    But under the VAcancies Actm that person cannot be Whittaker.

    Sammy Finkelman (102c75)

  49. He knew that if that info came out after the election and she had won, he’d be the first one on the sacrificial altar. That was him, covering his ass so he could claim he didnt partake in a coverup.

    I don’t believe it’s terribly productive to mindread what Comey’s motivations were, and he already explained his reasons. You can believe them or not. Apparently, to you, not. The bottom line is that IG concluded that his public statement in July and letter in October was a breach of FBI protocol, and both of those acts served to undermine Hillary and thereby benefit the Trump campaign. Irony abounds, because Comey benefited Trump’s campaign but his beneficial acts were used by Trump as a pretense for firing Comey, with Rosy the useful stooge, and then Trump went on Lester Holt and blew that all up.

    Paul Montagu (4575b4)

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